If the Dallas Cowboys versus Philadelphia Eagles game had you on the edge of your seat last week, you might have noticed a new the Down Judge was on the field.
In a game traditionally known for its testosterone, one female NFL official is starting to make waves– one call at a time.
In May of this year, the NFL announced its move to hire ten new on-field officials for the 2022 season. Among them was Robin DeLorenzo, who became the third woman to ever join the NFL’s on-field official roster.
Before Robin came Sarah Thomas, who was hired in 2015, and Maia Chaka, who was hired in 2021.
Robin is a New Jersey native who grew up cheerleading and watching her father, Rich, officiate games in their hometown.
“I’ve always loved the actual game of football since I was little. I gotta be honest, though. My father being an official, it never dawned on me because there were no women doing this,” she told CBS.
Eventually, though, Robin decided to stop looking for a trailblazer and became one herself. She first made history after becoming the only woman to regularly officiate high school football games in New Jersey. On top of that, Robin became the first woman to ever officiate a state championship game.
“I never realized how important it was for, you know, young girls to see representation everywhere in life,” Robin reflected.
And now, after twenty years of gaining on-field experience– in which she has seen about one hundred thousand plays–Robin has “moved up to the big leagues,” as some might say.