Ronda Rousey made history when she became the first female fighter signed to the UFC in November 2012.
She made history for the second time as half the main event at UFC 157, which was the first time a women’s bout was the headliner for a Pay-Per-View fight.
Now Rousey’s accomplishments are being recognized by Business Insider, which named the women’s bantamweight champion one of its 50 women changing the world. Rousey landed at No. 42 on the list.
According to the website, the 26-year-old “qualified for the Athens games when she was only 17 and was the youngest judo competitor enlisted.” Rousey also became the first American female athlete in almost a decade to win an A-Level tournament at the Birmingham World Cup in Great Britain in 2006. She was only 19 when she took home the gold medal. That same year, she took home the bronze at the Junior World Championships, becoming the first US athlete — male or female — to win two Junior World medals.
“Rowdy” Rousey, who made her MMA debut as an amateur in August 2010, became the Strikeforce Women’s Bantamweight Champion on March 3, 2012, when she defeated Miesha Tate by an armbar submission. She defended her title against Sarah Kaufman at Strikeforce: Rousey vs. Kaufman on August 18 that year. Strikeforce was purchased by Zuffa, the parent company of the UFC, in March 2011. An extension allowed Strikeforce to continue through January 2012 before being merged into the UFC.
Ronda Rousey made her UFC debut on February 23, 2013 against Liz Carmouche. Rousey continued her streak of armbar submissions to defeat Carmouche at 4:49 in the the first round.
“Young girls by the generation are going to want to be the next her, and mothers won’t have a problem with it and fathers won’t be afraid for their daughters,” Scoop Jackson said. “Putting Rousey in position to do something that not even Laila Ali could do for women’s boxing: make society look at an entire sport differently.”
Are you surprised that Ronda Rousey was named one of 50 women changing the world?