Julie Foudy, former captain of the U.S. Women’s National Team and one of the most accomplished female soccer players in the world, joined ESPN in 2005 as a women’s soccer and FIFA World Cup analyst. Following her work during the 2006 FIFA World Cup, Foudy’s role at ESPN was expanded to include serving as a features reporter and writer. She also currently covers the Olympics, Little League World Series, the UEFA European Championships and Special Olympics for ESPN and ABC.
Foudy also serves as one of espnW’s primary voices, providing commentary, reporting and digital features for ESPN’s women-focused brand, including hosting the hit espnW podcast, Laughter Permitted with Julie Foudy. She also provides personality-driven features for ESPN studio programs including SportsCenter and Outside the Lines (for which she won an Edward R Murrow Award for her feature on synthetic turf) and is the lead game analyst for ESPN’s U.S. National Women’s Team and college soccer coverage.
Foudy was a midfielder for the U.S. Women’s National Team from 1987 through 2004, serving as captain for 13 of her 17 years with the national. During her national team tenure, the U.S. women won two FIFA Women’s World Cup titles (1991, 1999), captured two Olympic gold medals (1996, 2004), and the silver medal in 2000 – en-route to becoming one of the most successful national soccer teams ever in the sport.
Foudy’s retirement, ending a remarkable international soccer career with 274 matches, along with fellow women’s soccer legends Mia Hamm and Joy Fawcett, marked the end of what was generally known as the “golden era” of women’s soccer in the United States. She was inducted into the National Soccer Hall of Fame in August 2007.
A former president of the Women’s Sports Foundation (2000-02), Foudy received the 1997 FIFA Fair Play Award for her trip earlier that year to Pakistan to examine the working conditions of factories of her then-sponsor, Reebok. A four-time All-American at Stanford and the 1991 Soccer America Player of the Year, Foudy was graduated in 1993, having earned a bachelor’s degree in biology. She turned down an admission into the Stanford Medical School to pursue a career in sports.
Foudy is the founder of the Julie Foudy Sports Leadership Academy and the author of Choose to Matter: Being Courageously and Fabulously YOU, a book for teenage girls and young women on leadership.
Julie is a founding co-owner of the female majority-owned and operated new women’s professional soccer team in Los Angeles, called Angel City FC, set to begin play in the NWSL in 2022.
Foudy currently resides in Southern California with her husband, Ian Sawyers, and two kids Izzy and Declan.