Please tell us a little bit about yourself.


Hi, my name is Kalia and I am in grade 5. I live in a little town just outside of London, Ontario, Canada. I live with my mom, dad and little brother, Kye – he is 8 years old. I LOVE basketball!! When I am on the court I feel so happy! I feel like I can do anything and it makes me feel so special. I play on the U11 London Ramblers basketball team. Some of my accomplishments are playing on the London Ramblers competitive team and winning a gold medal, two silver medals, and a bronze medal over the last two seasons. I also like to run! I came first in an 800 metre race and second in a 400 metre race! One of the things I am most proud of is having taken 7 charges in two years of playing competitive basketball – I love playing defense, so being able to do this really makes me happy! One day I hope to play basketball for the University of Notre Dame and then the WNBA.


Who is your favourite female athlete? And why?


My favorite female athletes are Candace Parker from the LA Sparks, Diamond Deshields from the Chicago Sky and my mom, who played in University and then professionally in Australia. I like Candace Parker because she really stands out on the court. I like Diamond Deshields because of how athletic she is. She makes the game look very easy. I like my mom, because…she’s my mom and she helps me become a better basketball player!


What is something you’re passionate about and how are you sharing your passion?


I am very passionate about the WNBA and equal rights for its players. I also think it is important for little girls like me to have female role models who are professional athletes. I am sharing my passion by trying to raise awareness about the WNBA. I have written to stories encouraging them to sell WNBA jerseys and clothing. I have also written to the WNBA head office and The Ellen Degeneres Show. I actually heard back from the WNBA, thanking me for helping influence the most recent groundbreaking collective bargaining agreement. One of my letters was also featured on a blog called www.teachbeyondaboundary.com. I have made posters and pamphlets and spoken to many people including my teammates and other friends, about the WNBA.


What advice do you have for parents, coaches or sport administrators to encourage or improve sport for females?


My advice for coaches is to, use females as examples. Rather than saying, ‘I want you to shoot like Steph Curry’ or ‘LeBron does this move…’ they could say something like ‘I want you to shoot like Allie Quigley’ or ‘Candace does this move’. I would like parents to show their kids (not just their daughters either – their sons should also be aware) how amazing the women in the WNBA are!


What do you say to yourself to motivate yourself?


When I step on the court, I tell myself to be the best basketball player I can be!