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Thomas first female on-field NFL playoff game official

14 January 2019

Thomas, who was born in Pascagoula, Miss., has been a football referee for around two decades, having officiated her first varsity high school game in 1999.

Then she became the NFL's first full-time female official.

Making history is nothing new for Thomas. Now she's reached another milestone.

Terri Valentini, the NFL's first female instant replay official, will also work the Indianapolis Colts-Kansas City Chiefs matchup on Saturday, marking her first postseason assignment.

At the time of her appointment to the National Football League in 2015, Thomas, a native of MS, said she "was speechless" when an National Football League official called her and offered her the job.

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Coach Diaz has a clear vision for this program as we move forward and it's an honor to help build the Hurricanes in his image. The Dearborn, Mich., native and his wife Jane, have two children, Lia and Alex.

Last year, she was named as an alternate for the match-up between the Atlanta Falcons and the Los Angeles' Rams wild-card playoff game.

"I would love for girls growing up in this country to believe that if they love the sport as much as I do, that they could be a part of it", she told People.

Thomas says she wants to focus on "being the best official I can be".

"Maybe at times when they made a controversial call that I didn't think was right, I voiced my opinion but I think they would get just as aggravated with me at times, too", Thomas said.

Thomas's career has been an ongoing blitz against sexism in the NFL.

Thomas first female on-field NFL playoff game official