“This inspiring book comes along at a perfect time, on the 40th anniversary of Title IX and in the same year as women athletes dominated the 2012 London Olympics. Girls who play sports and the coaches and families who support them will thoroughly enjoy Grant Overstake’s warm, uplifting story. After reading it, we’ll all wish we were pole vaulters like Maggie.” –Christine Brennan. Christine writes columns on national and international sports issues for USA Today. She’s also a commentator for ABC News, PBS NewsHour and National Public Radio, and the best-selling author of seven books.
Christine Brennan (born May 14, 1958, in Toledo, Ohio) is an American sports columnist, TV and radio commentator, best-selling author, and nationally-known speaker. She is especially known for her coverage of the Olympics and has written three books on the subject of figure skating: the best-selling Inside Edge (1996), Edge of Glory (1998), and Champions on Ice (2002).
Brennan received Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in Journalism from Northwestern University in 1980 and 1981, respectively. She started her career as the first female sports reporter for the Miami Herald in 1981 before moving to the Washington Post in 1984. There, she became the first woman to cover the Washington Redskins. In 1988, Brennan was elected the first president of the Association for Women in Sports Media. A longtime advocate for women in sports journalism, she started a scholarship-internship program for female journalism students that now honors six to seven students annually. Two of the scholarships are named after her late parents.
Brennan now is an award-winning sports columnist for USA Today, an on-air commentator for ABC News, CNN, NPR, and Fox Sports radio and the author of seven books, including the national best-seller Inside Edge. Brennan has covered the last 14 Olympic Games, Winter and Summer, beginning with the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics.
Her three books on figure skating include Inside Edge , which was named one of the top 100 sports books of all-time by Sports Illustrated. Brennan also broke the news of the pairs figure skating scandal at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics.
Brennan has written and spoken extensively on women’s sports issues. Her 2002 USA Today column on Augusta National Golf Club triggered the national debate on the club’s lack of female members. Her 2006 memoir, Best Seat in the House , is the first father-daughter memoir written by a sports writer. She also has written and spoken over the years about performance-enhancing drugs in sports and the behavior of role models, including Tiger Woods and Ben Roethlisberger.
She is a member of the Ohio Women’s Hall of Fame and Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism Hall of Achievement. She has received honorary degrees from Tiffin (Ohio) University and the University of Toledo.
Brennan is a member of the Board of Trustees of Northwestern University. She has initiated mentoring and speed-networking events for female student-athletes at Northwestern, as well as for students in Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism.
- 1993 Capital Press Women’s “Woman of Achievement”
- 1995 Inductee — Ohio Women’s Hall of Fame
- 2001 and 2003 Associated Press Sports Editors — Top 10 columnists in the category of the nation’s biggest newspapers
- 2002 U.S. Sports Academy’s Ronald Reagan media award
- 2003 Jake Wade Award from the College Sports Information Directors of America for outstanding media contribution to intercollegiate athletics
- 2004 Association for Women in Sports Media — Pioneer Award
- 2004 Northwestern University Medill School of Journalism Hall of Achievement inductee
- 2005 Woman of the Year from WISE (Women in Sports and Events)
- 2006 Inaugural Billie Award in Journalism 
- 2006 Inductee — Ottawa Hills (Ohio) Foundation Hall of Fame
- 2006 Alumnae Award winner from The Alumnae of Northwestern University
- 2007 Northwestern University Alumni Service Award
- 2008 Inaugural Northwestern University Women’s Athletics Alumnae Award