(NEW YORK) — Sarah Thomas has broken through the glass ceiling when it comes to women officiating a game in the National Football League.
Thomas will be a line judge during the upcoming 2015-16 NFL season, the league announced Wednesday.
Her resume includes eight years of officiating college games in Conference USA and taking part during the past two years in the NFL’s officiating development program.
The NFL’s first full-time female game official currently earns a living as a pharmaceutical sales representative.
She got her start in 1996 when she became the first woman in Mississippi to officiate a Division I-A high school football game.
Although Thomas actually learned the good news a week ago, it wasn’t made public until Wednesday.
Thomas told reporters during a conference call, “My goal literally is just to be the best official I can be. And I feel humbled and blessed to be part of the National Football League now.”
Dean Blandino, the NFL’s vice president of officiating, added that his new hire earned her job totally on merit.
In football, the line judge assists the head linesman at the other end of the line of scrimmage, looking for possible offside, encroachment and other penalties before the snap.
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