This transcript has been lightly edited. Watch the full interview above.
NBC10 Boston: I know a lot goes into deciding to retire. What went into that decision?
It was a gut decision. There were a lot of different factors in play, but I had a wonderful career with Team USA. I have learned so much and grown so much through my hockey career in general. I've been playing hockey since I was 3 years old, so, 30 years. It was just the right decision for me. I'm really excited about what's next and different opportunities that I hopefully get the chance to have.
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Do you remember how you got into hockey?
I definitely have some vivid memories of lacing up the skates as a young kid. I grew up in Danvers, Mass. -- shout-out to my hometown. I'm so proud and thankful to be from such a wonderful place, a town full of amazing people that have supported me throughout my whole journey. That's where it started for me. I have two older siblings. my brother Brian and my sister Caitlin. [Brian] played hockey as well and I wanted to be just like him. My parents threw me out on the ice and it was kind of love at first sight. I grew up through that program and then went on from there to play in the New England prep school league at Cushing Academy, went on to play for the Wisconsin Badgers and found my way into the Team USA locker room.
Often, girls who are interested in hockey are put in boys' leagues. How did that experience prepare you for your hockey journey overall?
A lot of the women on our Olympic team grew up playing boys' hockey because that was the only option. I was one of -- if not the only -- girl I ever saw playing hockey in my area. Kudos to all the support I felt along the way -- my family, our friends, coaches that I had that just supported me in, and allowed me to just be one of the guys and play without any questions... I've been excited to see the growth of women's hockey, girl's hockey, has been exponential, and there's countless girls programs, not only in the Boston area but, you know, nationally and globally and that's super exciting for someone like myself to see.
In 2017, you were a huge advocate for women [during negotiations with USA Hockey]. What was that experience like?
We certainly learned a lot through that experience. We learned a lot about ourselves, we learned a lot about the sport, about gender equity and all sorts of social injustices or civil rights. We did our homework and we fought hard for that. [That's] one of my proudest moments as a player and something that I think our team, all the women on our team can be really, really proud of. That kind of started my journey and my deeper passion and interest in advocating for all marginalized groups, and really pushing the envelope in a lot of different things, not only in sports but in all sorts of industries. I'm excited to certainly continue that type of work, kind of in my next chapter as well.
The Miami Marlins recently hired Kim Ng as the first female general manager in MLB. I've read that you would be interested in being a GM in the future. What was your reaction to hearing her story and how has that motivated you to keep pushing toward that goal?
I had a bunch of friends, teammates and colleagues that we were all just texting and sharing back and forth because it's so important right now in sports and beyond. Kim said it herself, "You have to see it to be it." She's really setting the standard for what professional sports and the front offices of professional sports can look like. I think she's paving the way for a lot of women to enter into the male professional sports space and that's definitely something that I would love to do. Ruth Bader Ginsburg said it, "Women belong in all places where decisions are being made." I think having diversity, whatever that looks like, in front offices of professional sports teams or in other industries, is only going to make those organizations better for a million reasons.
I'm not sure if you've even thought about your next step yet, but assuming that you do end up following that general manager route, what would be your first move?
That's obviously a big dream and a big goal and it takes a lot of work to get to a point like that... If I ever do get the opportunity to do that, I would say the biggest thing is just diversify our organization. Being a woman at the top, I would make sure that there's women everywhere, that there are people of color everywhere, that there's members of the LGBT community everywhere. When you think about the diversity of thought and the different perspectives that all those groups bring that's what's going to make a group and an organization strong.