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2023 Herbert Warren Wind Book Award - This compelling biography explores Gibson’s relentless drive to become the best athlete in not just one, but two competitive sports – and her incredible journey that would eventually break the color barrier in both. Brown, who picked up the game of golf in her 20s, draws on her historical expertise and lifelong love for the sport to tell the story of Gibson’s wholehearted pursuit of excellence, first in tennis where she became a paid professional in 1959 and then in golf, becoming the LPGA Tour’s first Black player.
Through this insightful look at the cultural influences that shaped women’s sports in the 1950s and beyond, Brown shows us a trailblazer who put herself and her ambitions first, to show the world how much she loved being an athlete. That same drive carried through the rest of Gibson’s life, propelling her to obtain her college degree after initially leaving school at age 14, to pursue careers in the music and movie industries, and to later advocate for education, physical fitness, and youth development through participation in sports, as the book chronicles in vivid and inspiring detail. (Hardcover) 616 pages.
Brown is the Allan H. Selig chair in the history of sport and society and an assistant professor of history at the University of Wisconsin at Madison.
The Herbert Warren Wind Award recognizes and honors outstanding contributions to golf literature. Brown’s book will be on display at the USGA Golf Museum and Library, home to the world’s largest collection of golf books and periodicals, with more than 100,000 individual volumes.
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