After watching a competitive sporting event with her husband, one woman in North Carolina observed that although some women competed in the event, there were no women of color. She decided to form The Ebony Anglers, an all-Black female fishing team, and upon entering their first competition, they emerged winners.
One would think competitive fishing events should be an all-men affair but Gia Peebles thought otherwise when she recruited five professional women from diverse backgrounds to form a competitive fishing team after watching the Big Rock Fishing Tournament with her husband last June.
“When I saw women of all ages coming from their fishing boats with fish and winning prizes, I noticed that there were no women of color competing,” Peebles told Spectacular Magazine. “I said to myself, ‘We can do this. I already know accomplished women who are leaders and know how to win in other aspects of their lives. We can do this.’”
Peebles is a salon owner and entrepreneur. Her team includes digital marketing specialist and editorial model Bobbiette Palmer, festival owner and educator Lesleigh Mausi, nail tech entrepreneur Glenda Turner and Gourmet Catering Company owner Tiana Davis. Together, these women juggle their professional careers, motherhood, and their newfound hobbies — competitive fishing — effortlessly.
The North Carolina all-Black female team entered their first competitive event, the King Mackerel division of the Spanish Mackerel & Dolphin Tournament in Morehead City, North Carolina, last year.
As if they had been at this for ages, these five illustrious women reeled in 48 lb. King Mackerel, making history as the first all-Black female competitive fishing team to win in the King Mackerel division of the tournament. Their admirable win caught the attention of the North Carolina Wildlife Resources and they earned the ever-prestigious citation from the outfit.
Knowing their potential and the lack of diversity in the competitive fishing sport, The Ebony Anglers have made it their mission to mentor, nurture and educate a new breed of young competitors for the sport.
Their target group is mostly young Black and brown children, and they hope to teach them to appreciate fishing and boating by setting up their mentoring program, Black Girls Fish and Black Boys Boat.
According to their site, their vision is “to establish a legacy of leadership, sportsmanship, and excellence for youth through education and mentoring.”