“There’s an adage, ‘You can’t be it if you can’t see it. I suggest to them, ‘Now you can see it.’ I look forward to hearing how inspired they are to now pursue a job in sports, a job in baseball and to reach for the stars.”
These are words from Kim Ng, who made sports history as she was named the new General Manager (GM) of the Miami Marlins. In doing so, Ng becomes Major League Baseball’s (MLB) first ever female GM and significantly, the first woman to hold that title in any of North American’s four major men’s professional leagues.
In America, the General Manager holds immense responsibility and is the highest position you can hold in a sports team aside from being the owner. The GM handles all the team’s transactions, contracts and occasionally finances and marketing. Typically, success or failure is largely attributed to the General Manager.
Ng has been an integral part six League Championship Series wins and three World Championship wins. Since her appointment was announced, she revealed she has been flooded with over a thousand emails and text messages of congratulations.
“I got voicemails from friends and front office executives with tears, just so happy that I had broken through, but really more for the sport and more about what it meant for us in society. I got calls and text messages from guys who were just so excited to tell their daughters and wives,” Ng said.
Amongst a list of high-profile congratulatory messages included best wishes from Michelle Obama, the former first lady, and another from Billie Jean King, the former tennis star.
King wrote. “Progress!” while Michelle Obama tweeted:
Ng, has more than 30 years of experience with the MLB. She first joined the league as an intern before landing a full-time position in 1991 with the Chicago White Sox as a special project’s analyst. In 1995, she was promoted to assistant director of baseball operations, before eventually joining the American League office in 1997.
In 1998, she joined the New York Yankees as an assistant general manager. At the time, Ng was just 29 years old, making her the youngest person in MLB history to hold that role. In 2001 she became the assistant general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers.