Trailblazer Blake Bolden

These women were incredible hockey players. 

Blake Bolden is a professional women’s hockey player who became the 1st black player in the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL). She has won championships in the NWHL with the Boston Pride. She also won with the Canadian Women’s Hockey League (Boston Blades). She currently plays for the Buffalo Beauts of the NWHL. Bolden was a player for four seasons at Boston College. She was captain of the team in 2012-2013.

The defenseman had 13 points (one goal, 12 assists) during the regular season for the Beauts, who were sadly defeated by the Minnesota Whitecaps in the Isobel Cup Final. 

How It All Started

Bolden became acquainted with hockey by a white man her mom dated when she was younger who had a somewhat different take. He liked that she was the only black girl. Her father told her to forget about the boys. Do what she wanted to do. 

Growing up, she didn’t see folks who looked like her playing hockey. It never mattered to her. She’s in it for the love of the game. She might have had a bit more to prove than others due to her race and gender. She believed if she worked hard and let her talent shine through, she would get the respect of her teammates and the folks around her, regardless.

Looking back, she feels the voice in her head may have said, “this game isn’t for folks that look like you.” However, that line of thinking was not part of who she was. Bolden has been successful throughout her development because of her positivity. She’s a hockey player as much as anyone else on the ice is. This is a game for anyone, and talent is everywhere and within everybody. She hopes her journey helps encourage other young girls, and young women of color, to get involved in hockey and show the world what they can accomplish.