Tamara Moore Named “2023 Breaking Barriers Award Honoree”

by Annika Freiburger

Virginia, MN- Tamara Moore, Head Coach of Men’s Basketball at Minnesota North College’s Mesabi Range campus, has been named a 2023 National Girls & Women in Sports Day-Minnesota honoree for their “Breaking Barriers” Award. Tamara will be recognized for her award during the 2023 National Girls & Women in Sports Day-Minnesota Celebration on Wednesday, February 1st.

Tamara Moore has been using her basketball prowess to break down barriers her entire life.

As a high school senior in 1998, she led the undefeated Minneapolis North High School team to the state championship, and later that year she became just the second African American athlete to win the Miss Basketball Award – given to the best player in the state. She graduated from North with the school record for points, rebounds, assists, blocks, and steals in a career, and is still the only girl to ever play in the Minneapolis Boys’ Inner City All-Star Game.

Her success carried into college where she played in every game from 1998-2002 for the University of Wisconsin. She was a part of two WNIT championships, was named the 2000 WNIT Championship Game MVP, made two trips to the NCAA Tournament with the Badgers, and in 2001 Moore was named the Big 10 Defensive Player of the Year. She graduated as the Badgers’ all-time leader in assists and steals, and in 2017 she was inducted into UW’s athletic hall of fame.

After college, Moore played in the WNBA for six years, and she also played overseas for six years before becoming the owner of a local semi-pro team and a men’s minor league basketball team. For seven seasons, Moore coached high school girls’ basketball around Minneapolis, and in 2020 she made history again when she took over as the head men’s basketball coach at Mesabi Range College in Virginia, Minn. Not only is she the first African American woman to coach a men’s college team, she is one of just three women ever to serve as the head coach of a men’s program.

Moore – who appeared on Good Morning America after her historic hiring – shattered another barrier this past summer when she served as an assistant coach for the Boston Celtics summer league team. During the 2021-22 season there were only seven women on NBA coaching staffs, but Moore looks to add to that number as she continues to shatter barriers at all levels of basketball.

The award ceremony recognizing the 2023 National Girls & Women in Sports Day-Minnesota honorees will take place at 12 p.m. CT at the Minnesota History Center in St. Paul, Minnesota on Wednesday, February 1st. Exhibits will open at 11 a.m. and the honoree event will begin at 12 p.m. The event is free and open to the public. Online live streaming and event replay will also be available at no cost via www.ngwsd-mn.com/2023-event.