In 1973, history was made. A woman would be ringside as the first professional boxing judge.
Carol Polis became not only the first woman to accomplish that title in the United States, but the world. So naturally, she felt like a rock star.
“You know here I am, I’m a young mother raising four children and I’m thinking to myself, 'I bet this is the way Marilyn Monroe must have felt,'” Polis said.
Being the only woman ringside as an official had its challenges, of course. But it didn’t take long for her to get the respect she deserved.
“In the very beginning the men would say ‘she should be home baking’, and I would say ‘I use the kitchen as a breezeway to get out of the house, not to bake.' But after a while I became one of the guys and they accepted me and saw that I was serious,” Polis said.
After years of judging and plenty of heavyweight fights, Polis had a different fight of her own. She was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2007.
“I just went in my closet and I just sobbed and I had no intention of getting up, and for some very odd reason a fighter lying on the mat came into my mind. And I thought 'oh boy, if he can do it, I can do it,'” she said.
So she kept on swinging, and 11 years later she’s still going strong and loving boxing. She’s a legend, and someone who lives and breathes setting her sights on a goal and going 100 percent. Now, she shares her story at speaking engagements across the United States.