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Top female athletes converge in Chicago for ESPNW summit

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Top women athletes who have made inspiring contributions to the world of sports were in Chicago for the first ever ESPNW Women and Sports Chicago Summit. (WLS)

Top women athletes who have made inspiring contributions to the world of sports were in Chicago for the first ever ESPNW Women and Sports Chicago Summit.

Female sports leaders all together to come up with ways to increase the profile of women's sports. Kicking off the conversation was WNBA MVP and Chicago Sky star Elena Delle Donne.

"The fact that people don't always know that WNBA plays over the summer is awful. We shouldn't have to explain when we're playing. We need to be able to tell the stories of the incredible women in our league," Delle Donne says.

U.S Olympic fencing team member Ibtihaj Muhammad was also present today. Muhammad says being a female Muslim athlete has not always been easy. These days however she calls herself the female version of Zorro.

"What I love about my sport is that once my mask goes on no one sees me for being African American, no one sees me for being Muslim, no one sees me for being a woman, you're seen for your skill set," she says..

But the one topic that kept coming up was the inequality that persists in terms of resources, whether it be at the collegiate or professional level, even for the World Cup champion U.S Women's National Soccer Team, who last year generated $20 million dollars more revenue than the men but were paid almost four times less. Some of the players have now filed a complaint with the EEOC.

"If no one is investing as we said to U.S Soccer 20 years ago, you need to put money into it to actually make people care about the market and then the return will come," says Julie Foudy, former Olympic and World Cup champion.

ESPNW hopes to bring the event back to Chicago next year. A total of 265 people participated Wednesday.
Related Topics:
sportswomenwomen athletesChicago - West Town
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