WASHINGTON, June 20, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Congressman Chaka Fattah (D-PA) issues this statement for the 40th anniversary of the enactment of Title IX on June 23, 1972:
"This Saturday, June 23, is the 40th anniversary of a revolution. And I want to mark the occasion by saluting two talented women athletes – Dawn Staley and Traci Green -- from my home town of Philadelphia whose lives were profoundly impacted by that revolution.
"Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972 doesn't actually mention women's athletics. The law simply and totally barred discrimination on the basis of sex in any education program or activity. The impact of Title IX has been so profound and widespread that we can hardly remember the men-first and men's only America that preceded it. But most visibly, Title IX turned women's athletics from a poorly-resourced afterthought to virtual parity with men's collegiate and scholastic athletics.
"Dawn Staley was two years old in 1972. Her entire career as a premier female basketball player, Olympian, coach, teacher and role model has occurred in the Title IX world. Dawn grew up in a poor neighborhood of Philadelphia and attended Dobbins Tech where she was named national high school player of the year. After starring at the University of Virginia and in professional leagues, Dawn returned to Philadelphia to become the most successful women's coach in Temple University history. And between two winning seasons of 21-10 and 28-4, Dawn carried the United States flag at opening ceremonies of the 2004 Olympics.
"Traci Green, also a Philadelphia native, has been outstanding as a player, coach and teacher of competitive tennis. Since taking over as the Harvard University women's tennis coach in 2007, she has completely flipped a losing program into an Ivy League powerhouse. In 2009 she became the first African American coach in Harvard's history to win a title. Traci, like Dawn, has a Temple connection, serving as the Owls' assistant and head tennis coach and as an adjunct faculty member in Temple's College of Education.
"Dawn Staley and Traci Green are achievers of the highest order. But perhaps it is even more significant that while they are exceptional, they are not the exception. Title IX has smashed barriers, reordered our thinking about women's roles in our society, and made such achievement possible for millions of women at every level of education and athletics.
"Challenges remain. Students who are mothers are often excluded from the protections of Title IX. Parity in resources and employment has not been fully achieved. And there are those still not reconciled to women's equality in education who resort to the courts and legislatures to try and turn back the clock. But they are on the wrong side of history. Forty years forward. We're not going back."
SOURCE Office of Congressman Chaka Fattah