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Story of Flint boxer Claressa Shields wins a Peabody Award

16 year old Claressa Shields photographed in January as she trained at Flint's Berston field house
Steve Carmody
Michigan Radio
Claressa Shields

The public radio production Radio Diaries was recognized today with a George Foster Peabody Award for its production 'Teen Contender.'

The first-person diary followed Flint boxer Claressa Shields as she prepared for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. The 2012 games were the first to allow women's boxing.

Shields won gold, by the way. Here is her Mom reacting to her win:

Credit Kate Wells
Claressa Shields' mother (right) reacts to her daughter's gold medal bout.

And here's a trailer for the radio diary that won the Peabody award:

And here's the diary itself:

The diary aired on NPR's All Things Considered in February 2012.

Radio Diaries founder and executive producer Joe Richman thanked his team of producers...

And of course, a huge thank you to our diarist Claressa Shields, who may be the only person to win a Peabody and an Olympic Gold Medal in the same year.

Michigan Radio's Steve Carmody produced a story on Shields as she prepared to make the Olympic team. Shields told Carmody she was planning to do something big for women's boxing:

"People always talk about women’s boxing is weak….But all the females I’ve ever seen…we actually better than a lot of the males. And I don’t understand where they coming from…all this crazy stuff… ‘girls can’t fight.’ But then they…see me fight…they can’t even tell that I’m a girl.”

The New York Times Magazine also featured Shields and other boxers in a series of photos and videos.

Shields' coach, Jason Crutchfield, said Shields saw boxing as a way "not fall into that trap of her home life. She has told me, ‘I want to do something in my life and this is my way out.’”

From the NYT Magazine:

“My goal before boxing was to have 10 kids before I was 26. I wanted to have a big old family. But now my goal is to get this gold medal and be a world champion,” said Shields.

Add world champion diarist to the list as well.

Mark Brush was the station's Digital Media Director. He succumbed to a year-long battle with glioblastoma, an aggressive brain cancer, in March 2018. He was 49 years old.
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