November 1, 2010: Today in LGBTQ+ history…
On November 1, 2010, Angela James became the first woman inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame – an honour she shared with Team USA star Cammi Granato. James was also the first openly gay player to be inducted into the Hall and the second Black player (joining NHL goaltender Grant Fuhr).
James was born in Toronto on December 22, 1964, and grew up skating her way through gender and race barriers as a young Black woman playing what had long been considered a white man’s game…especially on the international stage, where she is considered the first superstar of modern women’s hockey.
She won four world championship gold medals in the 1990s, registering 22 goals and 34 points in 20 games over those four tournaments.
“This is a day I never really thought would ever happen,” James told the Toronto Star at the time. “I look at this as being a great day for female hockey.”
In addition to being inducted into the Hockey Hall Of Fame, James has also been honoured by numerous other halls of fame. She was inducted into Canada’s Sports Hall of Fame in 2009 and was named to the Order of Hockey in Canada in 2021.
Though she’s long retired from professionally playing hockey, James’ legacy continues to inspire young women – especially young women of colour – and the entire LGBTQ+ community.