The First Female Gold Medalists, Week 15: Boxing & Judo

Excerpts taken from Team USA’s article dated March 24, 2016. 

This week, we head to our last Olympic Games in London. 2012 was a huge year for Team USA Women, marking the first time there were more female participants than male.



Women’s boxing made its Olympic debut at the London 2012 Olympic Games, and Shields dominated the middleweight class on her way to winning gold. With only one loss in her career, Shields went on to win the 2014 world championship and became the first U.S. women’s boxer to win gold at the Pan American Games, a feat she completed in Toronto in 2015. She looks to become the first American boxer, male or female, to win two Olympic gold medals with a second win in Rio.



When Kayla Harrison won gold at the London 2012 Olympic Games, she became the first American judoka in either gender to become Olympic champion. In 2010, Harrison became only the fourth American to win a world title; she went on to win two world bronze medals, in 2011 and 2014, and is the 2011 and 2015 Pan American Games champion. Currently ranked No. 1 in the world in the -78 kg. weight class, Harrison looks to make her second Olympic team in 2016.