On the soccer pitch, she’s known as number ten and the player who once completed an unprecedented feat: a hat-trick within the first fifteen minutes of a World Cup championship game. Off the field, Carli Lloyd has emerged as one of the foremost advocates for pay equality in sports.
Lloyd will bring that equal-pay-for-equal-play message to Bailey Hall on Friday December 6 in an event sponsored by Cornell University Program Board.
The two-time Olympic medalist will be interviewed by Prof. Lawrence Glickman, American history, followed by a question-and-answer session. Audience members can submit their questions to CUPB online prior to the event.
Lloyd, now 36 years old, has made headlines for years as one of the top scorers in the national league, and has been generously decorated with accolades throughout her career. Most notably, she was named FIFA Player of the Year in 2015 and 2016 and served as co-chair of President Obama’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition. The Rutgers University alumna has been playing soccer since she was a young girl. She now mentors the young players on her hometown team, the Medford Strikers.
In 2016, Lloyd authored a New York Times essay calling for salary increases for the women’s team, stating, “This isn’t about a money grab. It’s about doing the right thing, the fair thing. It’s about treating people the way they deserve to be treated, no matter their gender.”
Her essay was published to explain her motivation for signing onto a wage discrimination lawsuit against US Soccer in March 2016. The case will have its day in court next year — a federal judge ruled on Nov. 8 to elevate it to a class-action lawsuit, which will be heard in May 2020.
This past July, Lloyd was instrumental in helping her team to victory in the 2019 World Cup final game against the Netherlands. In her Times piece, Lloyd laid out the discrepancies between how US Soccer treats its champions.
“If I were a male soccer player who won a World Cup for the United States, my bonus would be $390,000,” she wrote. “Because I am a female soccer player, the bonus I got for our World Cup victory last summer was $75,000.”
It was the U.S. women’s team’s fourth World Cup win in eight appearances. The men’s US national team has appeared in ten World Cup tournaments, and has never claimed a trophy since the men’s competition began in 1930.
When Naomi Jaffe ’21, a defenseman on the Cornell women’s soccer team, found out that Lloyd was coming to Cornell, she and her teammates “freaked out.”
“Each player [on the women’s national team] is a role model to me and it’s really amazing what they’ve done to put women’s soccer on the map and make a difference on and off the field,” Jaffe said.
Jaffe told The Sun that her whole team is excited to attend the event and hear Lloyd speak about her work in advocating for equal pay.
“It’s an extremely important movement. It’s just not fair for female athletes to be rewarded less for their hard work than men who do the same job,” Jaffe said.
Members of the Cornell Community can pick up their free ticket with a valid Cornell ID at Willard Straight Hall Resource Center beginning Nov. 19 at noon. Tickets for the general public will be available beginning on Nov. 25. A limited amount of tickets will be available at the door.