Holtkamp-Sterling becomes first mother to officiate in NBA

Associated Press
December 06, 2019 - 10:02 pm
Referee Lauren Holtkamp-Sterling watches during the first half of an NBA basketball game between the Chicago Bulls and the Golden State Warriors on Friday, Dec. 6, 2019, in Chicago. This is Holtkamp-Sterling's first game back since giving birth.

(AP Photo/Paul Beaty)

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CHICAGO (AP) — Referee Lauren Holtkamp-Sterling made NBA history Friday night when she became the first mother to officiate a league game.

Holtkamp-Sterling worked the Bulls-Warriors game in Chicago.

The game was the first for Holtkamp-Sterling since she gave birth to daughter Stoan this year. She missed last season with a knee injury that required surgery and the start of her 2019-20 season was delayed by abdominal surgery.

Her husband, Jonathan Sterling, worked the Los Angeles Clippers-Bucks game in Milwaukee on Friday night. The couple met at a college basketball referees event before they became the first married couple to officiate in league history.

"That's amazing. They probably have a good nanny, I'm guessing. That cannot be easy raising a child with two NBA refs as parents. It's a pretty incredible story. I'm happy for Lauren that she's back on the court," Warriors coach Steve Kerr said.

In 2014, Holtkamp-Sterling became the third full-time female referee in league history.

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