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Tomboy ICON | Sarah Marquis

By J .
on March 19, 2019

Tomboy icon Sarah MarquisPhoto of Sarah Marquis in Western Australia, 2015 - eating grains and fruits gathered from the bush.

Sarah Marquis is a Swiss adventurer and explorer. If you put all her journeys together they would stretch around the globe and the wilder the terrain the better.  She's walked across the United States, walked across Australia, hiked through the Andes from Chile to Machu Picchu. In 2010 she began a three-year-long solo walk from Siberia to the Gobi Desert, into China, Laos, and Thailand. Along the route, she was harassed by Mongolian men on horseback and threatened by Laotian drug dealers. For security, she sometimes disguised herself as a man and tried not to leave tracks so as not to be followed. In 2014 she was named one of National Geographic's Adventurers of the Year. 

She says as a child growing up in the countryside of Switzerland, she would disappear for hours exploring. "I've always been wild," says Sarah, "Climbing trees, checking out animals and creepy crawlies, it all shaped the person I am today."

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Ann Meyers Drysdale

By J .
on November 30, 2018

Photo of Meyers at the Pacers’ 1979 rookie and free agent camp where she earned admiration from fellow players for her grit and competitiveness.

Ann Meyers Drysdale is a retired American basketball player and sportscaster. She was the first woman offered a four-year athletic scholarship at UCLA where she played basketball (1974–1978). As a kid she remembers being in a Catholic elementary school and wearing shorts under her uniform skirt so she could play with the boys on the playground. "I must have been 10 or 11 years old, and one of the teachers grabbed me by the arm and said, 'You can't play with the boys. It's not ladylike.' I didn't understand it," she said. "My parents never discouraged me from doing anything my brothers were doing." 

In 1979, Ann became the first woman to sign as a free agent with an NBA team, participating in a 3-day tryout with the Indiana Pacers. Although she didn't make the team, she dared to go where no woman had gone before and made her mark in NBA history.

Ann always wore the term tomboy as a badge of honor. "Yeah, I was a little proud of it," she said. "That's what it meant to be good at sports if you were a girl."

 

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Elspeth Beard

By J .
on October 20, 2018

Photo of Elspeth Beard in London after completing her solo ride around the world. (1984)

Elspeth Beard is an English architect and motorcyclist. In 1982, an age before the internet, smartphones, and when women rarely travelled alone to adventurous countries – Elspeth set off to ride her motorcycle around the world. She'd ridden through unforgiving landscapes, countries ravaged by war, witnessed civil uprisings that forced her to fake documents, fended off sexual attacks, biker gangs and corrupt police convinced she was trafficking drugs. She's the first English woman to ride a motorcycle around the world and achieved something then that is still remarkable today.

"If my story can now inspire other people, especially women to believe there are no limits to what can be achieved with self-belief and determination," Elspeth says, "then this would bring a whole new meaning to my trip."

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Laura Ingalls Wilder

By J .
on July 07, 2018

American author Laura Ingalls Wilder wrote the much-loved "Little House" book series based on her real-life adventures growing up on the Western frontier during the late 1800s.

Laura was a spirited young tomboy who preferred fishing, playing baseball, wintertime snowball fights and racing around with the boys after school.

In 1974, her books were adapted for the television series "Little House on the Prairie". Actress Melissa Gilbert played young Laura for nine seasons, growing up in the role from the age of ten to eighteen.

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Ellen Page

By J .
on January 03, 2018

Ellen Page is a beloved Hollywood A-list actress who had her breakthough role in the 2007 hit movie Juno. She's well known for her tomboy persona and is more likely to be seen wearing sneakers than a pair of 5-inch stilettos.

“As a girl, you're supposed to love Sleeping Beauty,” Ellen says. “I mean, who wants to love Sleeping Beauty when you can be Aladdin?”

 

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Mia Hamm

By J .
on October 10, 2017

Mia Hamm soccer icon tomboy

Mia Hamm is considered the best women's soccer player in history. As a former American player she competed with the U.S. women's national soccer team for 17 years. She won the Women's World Cup in 1991 and 1999, and took Olympic gold medals in 1996 and 2004.

As a child, Hamm has said she wasn't the best in choir or math but she understood her own talent, which was her competitiveness on the field.

 

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Jackie Joyner-Kersee

By J .
on October 05, 2017

Jackie Joyner-Kersee was voted by Sports Illustrated to be Women's Greatest Female Athlete of All-Time (1987). She's the first American ever to win a gold medal in the long jump and the first woman in history to earn more than 7,000 points in the grueling seven-event heptathlon. She's won three Olympic gold medals, one silver, and one bronze, and she established a world record in the heptathlon in 1986. Her achievements are so astounding, and her personality so engagingthat she has become one of Americas favorite track athletes.

 

 

 

Tomboy ICON | Billie Jean King

By J .
on September 21, 2017

battle of the sexes billie jean king icon

American tennis great Billie Jean King broke down barriers in her push for equal prize money for women.

She gained both fame and the admiration of fans for her defeat of Bobby Riggs in the 1973 "Battle of the Sexes" match. Afterward, King acknowledged the pressure she felt that day. "I thought it would set us back 50 years if I didn't win that match," she said. "It would ruin the women's tour and affect all women's self esteem."

Life magazine (1990) named her one of the "100 Most Important Americans of the 20th Century." Not sports figures, but Americans. She was the only female athlete on the list, and one of only four athletes (Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson and Muhammad Ali were the others).

 

 

 

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