NBA Commissioner Calls for the Hire of More Women Referees and Coaches
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NBA Commissioner Adam Silver is calling for the hiring of more women as referees and coaches in the league. There are currently 3 female refs, a number he wants to drastically increase. There are no female coaches.
During an appearance at the Economic Club Of Washington last week, he said he wants women to make up half of all new referees joining the NBA. Adding that he wants teams to hire female coaches as well.
“It’s an area, frankly, where I’ve acknowledged that I’m not sure how it was that it remained so male-dominated for so long,” Silver said. “Because it’s an area of the game where physically, certainly, there’s no benefit to being a man, as opposed to a woman, when it comes to refereeing.”
“The goal is going forward, it should be roughly 50-50 of new officials entering the league,” he said. “Same for coaches, by the way. We have a program, too. There’s no reason why women shouldn’t be coaching men’s basketball.”
Beck Hammon became the first female full-time assistant coach back in 2014, with the San Antonio Spurs. Kristi Toliver of the WNBA’s Washington Mystics joined the NBA’s Washington Wizards as part of the assistant coach development staff. She became the first active WNBA player working as an NBA assistant coach.