November 14, 2023
Locked On Women’s Basketball: Natalie White of Moolah Kicks, author Jenn Bishop build infrastructure
'We love women's basketball and know all the qualities that make it so exciting and special.'
It’s a very down-to-business episode of Locked On Women’s Basketball, as host Howard Megdal is joined by two individuals from very different sides of the business around women’s basketball. First, Moolah Kicks Founder and CEO Natalie White joined the show to discuss her brand of basketball shoes designed for women and girls. Then, children’s book author Jenn Bishop spoke to Howard about her newest book, “Free Throws, Friendship, and Other Things We Fouled,” about two basketball-obsessed middle-schoolers learning about themselves and the power of friendship.
White and Megdal first talked about how the Moolah Kicks brand came to be, filling a void in the market for basketball shoes tailored for women and girls: “What we’re so excited by is that when girls say this is my first season playing girls basketball, whether it be elementary school, middle school, they can have their first season, and they can play in a shoe that is fit for them and fit for their game, from a brand whose sole existence is to celebrate them and elevate their game and all of women’s basketball,” White explained.
White explained how she had grown up playing basketball in New York, but didn’t realize she had been playing in men’s and children’s sneakers until she was a senior in college.
“I saw an ad that had four WNBA players, the biggest names that I looked up, to holding out shoes named after NBA players. And that was the first time that it hit me … that you can be the best in the world at women’s basketball, but you will still be promoting a product named after someone else,” White said.
“Moolah is an opportunity for us to come together as a women’s basketball community and say, every dollar that this brand earns, goes back into women’s basketball, goes back into better products, goes back into more sponsorships. And it’s not because we feel good about it, it’s not because it’s charity, it’s not because no one’s done it before. It’s because we love women’s basketball and know all of the qualities that make it so exciting and so special. And we want to honor and serve all the players in this community.”
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Then, children’s author and librarian Jenn Bishop joined the show to discuss her new book, which features two middle schoolers in the basketball town of Cincinnati. Bishop described growing up filling out March Madness brackets with her dad and growing up near UConn, whose women’s basketball team her grandmother loved to watch.
“I went to a high school that had a terrific field hockey team,” Bishop said. “I did not make that field hockey team, but it was really cool for me to see women succeeding in sports and that being the big thing for my school.”
“For me, it’s so important to tell these stories [so] that girls see themselves everywhere … it’d be great to see more equality and equity in the sport, and I think that part of it is getting kids really encouraged about sports early and being able to see themselves as a player but also as a fan,” she added.
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Here at The Next, in addition to the 24/7/365 written content our staff provides, we also host the daily Locked on Women’s Basketball podcast. Join us Monday through Saturday each week as we discuss all things WNBA, collegiate basketball, basketball history and much more. Listen wherever you find podcasts or watch on YouTube.
Tune in to hear more from White and Bishop on their latest projects and what drew them to their respective businesses around women’s basketball.
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