Following her graduation from college in 1987, Gov. Palin (then Sarah Heath) secured a job with KTUU as a weekend sportscaster. Women sportscasting was a rarity at the time. In, Kaylene Johnson’s Sarah: How a Hockey Mom Turned the Political Establishment Upside Down, Johnson recounts Gov. Palin’s first day on the job:
The day after starting her first job as a weekend sportscaster at KTUU-TV, channel 2, she called Tilly, laughing about a message from a viewer complaining that Sarah had taken the place of a male.
“It looks like you got rid of the old bum,” the caller said, “and you’ve replaced him with a bimbo” (Johnson, 2008)
Young Sarah Heath was blazing a new trail in what was still predominantly a man’s world.
Governor Palin discussed her career as a sportscaster on pages 28 through 30 of Going Rogue.
…There were few women in the field. I couldn’t see any reason why women shouldn’t bust through and succeed in this arena. Lesley Visser had already shattered the ceiling, breaking into the profession when the rules of the press box were plainly printed on media credentials: NO WOMEN OR CHILDREN ALLOWED….
…I didn’t subscribe to all the radical mantras of that early feminist era, but reasoned arguments for equal opportunity definitely resonated with me. It was a matter not of ideology but of simple fairness. Standing on the shoulders of women who had won hard-fought battels for things like equal pay and equal access, I grew up knowing I could be anything I wanted to be (Palin, 2009, pp. 28-29).
KTUU Sports Cast 1988
Johnson, K. (2008). Sarah: How a Hockey Mom Turned the Political Establishment Upside Down. (Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House).
Palin, S. L. H. (2009). Going Rogue: An American Life. (New York: Harper). pp. 28-30.