Fifty Years Forward Showcase On Women’s Athletics Debuts
Fifty years ago, Title IX was signed into law as part of the Education Amendments Act on June 23, 1972. That piece of legislation opened the door for participation in athletics and many other life-changing opportunities for women.
As we celebrate women in sports at the University of Utah and the 50th anniversary of Title IX, Utah Athletics is producing a four-month, cross-platform content series showcasing the people, magical moments, milestones, and behind-the-scenes stories from Utah's rich history.
The series, "Fifty Years Forward," focuses on the themes of Opportunity, Empowerment and Legacy. In-depth features, classic photos, video vignettes and other content forms will bring those stories to life on UtahUtes.com as well as our social media and digital platforms. The series begins June 23 and leads into the Utah Athletics Fifty Years Forward Celebration Weekend, Sept. 30-Oct. 1.
A video featuring Utah women student-athletes reading the words of Title IX officially launched the series on social media.
"This is a tremendous opportunity to celebrate the rich history of our women's sports programs at the University of Utah, and those who established the foundation for the incredible achievements we continue to see today," said Director of Athletics Mark Harlan. "We're excited to tell those stories and we look forward to a very meaningful celebration here in the fall."
After Title IX was implemented, the U began building the foundation for women's collegiate sports and officially launched programs two years later, beginning with tennis in 1974 and basketball in 1974-75. Programs for volleyball, gymnastics, skiing and softball were ushered in during the 1975-76 athletics year. Cross country and track & field were implemented in 1981 followed by swimming & diving in 1982. Soccer came on board in the fall of 1995 and beach volleyball was added in the spring of 2017.
"I couldn't be more grateful for the many benefits I've received because of Title IX," said Charmelle Green, Utah Deputy A.D. for Internal Operations and COO. "As we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Title IX and reflect on the amazing women that paved the way for so many women and girls in sports, I am reminded of the challenges they faced, the rough roads they traveled, the battles they fought so that I—and others like me—could benefit from a great education, a tremendous collegiate athletic experience, and an amazing career in college athletics."
"As the Deputy Athletics Director of our wonderful institution," Green continued, "I will never take for granted the awesome responsibility I have to make a difference in the lives of our students and demonstrate the kind commitment, leadership, and determination for continued progress just like the legends that came before me. While we've made significant progress over the years, there's still a lot of work to be done."
A dedicated website www.UtahUtes.com/FiftyYearsForward will house all of the creative content, historical notes on Utah's women's programs, and registration details for the Fifth Years Forward Celebration Weekend, which will include a banquet on Friday, Sept. 30 in the Jon M. Huntsman Center and events around the Utah vs. Oregon State football game the following day.
Here are some details on what to look for on UtahUtes.com and the Utes' social media outlets over the next four months:
Social Media Throwback Thursday
Running every Thursday from June 23-Sept. 29, the series will include snapshots of the overall history of our women's programs, select individuals, teams, and milestone moments.
A nine-part series on the creation, evolution, biggest accomplishments and behind-the-scenes stories of women's athletics at Utah. Written by former Deseret News writer Dirk Facer, the series will debut on June 23 and then shift to every other Tuesday on UtahUtes.com.
During the late summer and early fall, we will feature video highlights of some of the biggest events in Utah women's athletics history on our social media outlets.
Other plans are in the development stages, so please check back to our various platforms for more details over the next four months.