#AYWSpotlight | Sergeant Christy Calderon

RICHMOND, VA (November 1, 2017) – The ECNL and the Amazing Young Women movement are dedicated to showcasing females that have helped shape the league into the top female youth soccer development platform in the world. As part of the movement, the ECNL encourages amazing young women to share their stories.

The ECNL is excited to announce Christy Calderon as the ECNL Amazing Young Woman Spotlight of the Week. Calderon currently serves as a Sergeant in the Phoenix Police Department, and has been on the force for a total of 19 years. There are a number of factors from Calderon’s childhood that she can attribute to her successes as an adult, most notably playing soccer and being a referee.

Calderon began playing soccer when she was five years old, and continued to play throughout her adolescence. Soccer was not as popular among women at the time, pushing her to play with boys’ teams for most of her youth career. Although she eventually was able to play with other young women through CISCO Soccer Club when she was 11, her high school did not have a women’s soccer team at the time. That didn’t stop Calderon, as she continued to play on the boys’ team through her high school years. In hindsight, this prepped Calderon for her eventual job in law enforcement, a field that has been traditionally male-dominated.

After six years in the homicide division, she earned a promotion to a supervisory role as Sergeant, where she directly oversees anywhere from seven to fourteen officers each shift. Today, she is in a supervisory position and directly oversees between seven to fourteen officers each shift. She is the only female Sergeant in her precinct, which is not surprising considering only 9% of officers in supervisory roles in law enforcement are female. 1

“I take a great deal of pride that I am one of the few women in a supervisory role. As a woman, I believe I bring a different point of view to the table in understanding that everyone needs to be lead in different ways. In a lot of ways, it is similar to coaching and dealing with different personalities and how I can get us all to work as a team,” Calderon said about her position as Sergeant in the police department.

The team aspect of law enforcement is no stranger to Calderon with her soccer background. When she is patrolling the streets with her fellow officers, there is a mutual dependency between her and her team. This type of environment feels familiar, and again Calderon draws so many parallels between life on the force and life on the pitch.

Calderon can also credit her success, and ability to let things roll off her back, to refereeing soccer.

“That taught me to develop a thick skin. As a referee, I was called names and yelled at so I learned to let it go in one ear and out the other. I believe both aspects from being a player and a referee in soccer have really helped me in my career in law enforcement,” Calderon said about how refereeing has made an impact on her career as a police officer.

Over the course of her youth career, she looked up to several coaches and mentors who were in law enforcement, which eventually impacted her to decision to pursue a career in law enforcement. She still keeps in touch with one of her youth coaches, Ed Felix, who is a retired Captain in the Arizona Department of Public Safety (Arizona State Police). She also keeps up with several club teammates, some of whom she still plays soccer with recreationally in the Phoenix area.  Calderon regularly encounters old teammates who are coaching or have children playing soccer, usually when she is on duty at Reach 11 Sports Complex.

“It’s great to see how much the sport has grown since I played. Working ECNL events, I get to see the high level of play from clubs all over the country with college coaches recruiting and giving players the opportunity to play at the next level. We didn’t have that when I played,” Calderon said about working at Reach 11 Sports Complex and at ECNL events.

Thank you, Christy Calderon, for paving the way for young women in the law enforcement field and being a leader in your community. If you see Sergeant Calderon at ECNL Phoenix, make sure to say hello!


About Amazing Young WomenTM:  Launched by the ECNL, the Amazing Young Women is a dynamic platform of online and local market activations that showcase and celebrate female role models offering an aspirational focus for all female athletes and teens as they prepare to be our next generation of leaders.  The ECNL is calling on all of the nation’s women to join the movement to celebrate the endless potential of today’s girls.

Women of all ages can share their personal moments of inspiration through social media and at www.AmazingYoungWomen.com.  Every share and submission helps drive a movement that celebrates the power of what it is to be a girl today.

Amazing Young Women of the ECNL will be showcased at AmazingYoungWomen.com. Through testimonials, tips and tools, the website is providing all girls to view, share, and celebrate what it is to be motivated, strong, and successful.

About Elite Clubs National League:  The Elite Clubs National League (ECNL) was founded in 2009 to enhance the developmental experience of female youth soccer players in the United States through: (i) improving the competitive environment through creation of a true national competitive league; (ii) improving the process for identifying elite female soccer players for college and youth national teams through a systematic scouting and identification program based on national competitions; and (iii) improving the daily training environment at top female youth soccer clubs through developing best practices and training and organizational guidelines for its member clubs.  The ECNL is sanctioned by US Club Soccer and is sponsored by Nike Soccer.

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  1. Novak, Kenneth J., et al. “Women on Patrol: an Analysis of Differences in Officer Arrest Behavior.” Policing: An International Journal of Police Strategies & Management, vol. 34, no. 4, Aug. 2011, pp. 566–587., doi:10.1108/13639511111180216.