No one would object if someone named Cammi Granato “Ms. Hockey.”
She is one of the most decorated female hockey players in the history of the sport and recently added an impressive title to her sterling resume. The Seattle Kraken, the NHL’s newest expansion team, hired Granato as a professional scout in late 2019. The hire also made Granato the first full-time female professional scout in the league.
“It’s an honor – especially if that changes the way other organizations think or that changes the way young girls think about positions they can take in hockey if they’ve been around the games all of their lives,” Granato toldThe Seattle Times. “It just kind of opens up that door I feel pretty humbled to have that role.”
Granato’s experience in hockey cannot be understated. She was the captain of the gold medal-winning 1988 U.S. Olympic team and was the first woman to be inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. The Illinois native understands the importance of her latest feat, but won’t let it distract her from doing the best job possible.
“I get the magnitude of it. I understand the responsibility that comes with it, the breaking barriers, being a trailblazer,” Granato told Inside Hockey. “But my whole life, I have been hearing the same thing about I’m trying to play a men’s sport and I don’t belong. It’s nothing any woman who has been in this position isn’t used to, and I’m used to it, but I’m not identifying myself any differently than any other scouts.”
Granato, who was a member of the U.S women’s national team for 15 years, has already been busy scouting for the Kraken, who are set to make their NHL debut in 2021. Granato joins a short, but growing list of women working in operational roles for an NHL franchise, but is hopeful the league is trending in the right direction.
“It’s just another way to break barriers.. It’s another way to show the momentum that is happening in sport with women being hired in all different capacities. I think that’s how I view it,” Granato said in an interview with SportsNet. “It’s more not just about myself but more women getting jobs that they’re actually qualified for but just haven’t been looked at before now and it might change the mind of people to look at that in a different way in the way Seattle has.”