February is LGBT History Month and with that in mind we have chosen Nicola Adams as our Inspirational Diversity Champion of the Month.
Nicola is a British professional boxer. She fought (and won) her first bout at the age of 13, but it was four years before she found a second opponent. In 2001, she became the first woman boxer ever to represent England, in 2003, she became English amateur champion for the first time, and she retained the title at the next 3 championships.
She was the first English female to win a medal in a major tournament taking silver in the bantamweight division at the European Championships, she also won silver at the World Championships in 2008 and in 2010 this time at flyweight.
However Nicola struggled to continue her boxing career due to lack of funds. She worked as an acting extra on soap operas such as Coronation Street, Emmerdale, and EastEnders, and worked as a builder before the International Olympic Committee backed funding for women’s boxing in 2009.
In November 2010, she was victorious in the first ever GB Amateur Boxing Championship and in 2011, she won Gold at the European Union Amateur Boxing Championships. In July 2011, the BBC included her in a feature on “6 Promising Britons to watch in the Olympics”.
At the 2012 Olympics Nicola claimed the first Olympic women’s boxing gold medal, she defended her title at Rio 2016 and became the first British boxer to defend an Olympic title in 92 years.
In 2017 she turned professional, having signed with promoter Frank Warren, winning her first professional fight.
In 2012, she became the first female boxer to receive an award from the Boxing Writers’ Club of Great Britain when she was awarded the Joe Bromley Award for outstanding services to boxing. She was also the first woman ever to be invited to the club’s awards ceremony.
In 2013 she was awarded an MBE and in 2017 an OBE 2017 for services to boxing.
In 2016 Nicola was named Number One in the DIVA Power List of the UK’s most eminent lesbian and bisexual women. She is openly bisexual, and was named the most influential LGBT person in Britain by The Independent in 2012.
She also became the first openly LGBT person to win an Olympic boxing Gold medal, after her win at the 2012 Summer Olympics.
To find out more about LGBT History Month see here https://lgbthistorymonth.org.uk/
To find out more about Nicola see here https://nicola-adams.com/