NFL Has First Female Official
Shannon Eastin made her NFL officiating debut in Thursday night’s pre-season game between the Green Bay Packers and San Diego Chargers.
Yes, the name can be both a male and female name, but just to be clear, this Shannon is a woman – a 42-year-old with 16 years experience at the collegiate level and the first woman to wear the zebra outfit in an NFL game – albeit a pre-season one.
Eastin is one of the league’s replacement officials (the NFL locked out players last year and are currently in a lock out dispute with their regular referee’s this off season), but is no stranger to being the first woman to do something.
ESPN.com is reporting her 16-year experience includes time in the Mid-Eastern Atlantic Conference where she became the first female crew chief – a.k.a the boss of the field. The report includes a photo of Eastin working Thursday night’s game…
A multiple national judo champion as a child, she started officiating high schools games, moved up to colleges and eventually to the MEAC, where she became the first woman to be a crew chief.