Jonathan Swift once said, “Power is no blessing in itself, except when it is used to protect the innocent.”
This is something that Lisa Borders knows so well. As the President of The Women’s National Basketball Association, she has had to use this power to change the way that female ballers are viewed and respected. Challenging powerful notions about women in athletics, she has had to deal with her share of discrimination and exploitation based not only on her womanhood but race. And for three seasons, she has met this challenge with grace. However, she has recently announced that she will be transitioning from her post as the head of the WNBA to become the first President and Chief Executive Officer of Time’s Up.
According to their website, Time’s Up is an organization that insists on safe, fair and dignified work for women of all kinds. Birthed out of the #MeToo Movement and The Women’s March, this organization has become popular in the sports and entertainment industries where celebrities have recently taken up arms. Despite having an abundance of support with superstars, Time’s Up reminds the average woman working that she is not alone.
NBA Commissioner Adam Silver commented, “We are extremely grateful for Lisa’s leadership and tireless commitment to the WNBA… This is a natural transition for Lisa knowing what a champion she is for issues involving women’s empowerment and social justice and fortunately for us, she leaves the league with strong tailwinds propelling it forward.”
Borders did set the league up to move forward. In 2017, the WNBA had its highest regular-season attendance in six years and in 2018, under her leadership, the WNBA had more views than it had in over four years. She also pushed the marketing strategy of the league by live streaming games on Twitter, where fans could engage in back and forth dialogue with each other during the actual game. She also pumped up the league’s charitable initiatives. Borders noted, “I am most proud of the W players for their amazing talents on the court and their dedication to making an impact in their communities.”
BREAKING: Lisa Borders is stepping down as WNBA president to become president and CEO of Time’s Up. NBA Deputy Commissioner Mark Tatum will oversee the WNBA on an interim basis, and a search for a new league president will commence immediately.
— ESPN Women’s Hoops (@ESPN_WomenHoop) October 2, 2018