Jessika Carr becomes first full-time female referee for WWE
Carr officiated the match between wrestlers Alexa Bliss and Mandy Rose.
“There are no words for this day and night. So incredible grateful, thank you. #SmackDownOnFox,” Carr tweeted.
Carr’s parents surprised her Friday, waiting for her backstage wearing referee shirts.
Wrestlers praised Carr as well.
“A huge night for @WWELadyRefJess and a massive gain for #Smackdown. Welcome to #TeamBlue, incredibly proud of what you’ve accomplished and what you represent,” Triple H tweeted.
Alexa Bliss said she was happy to have Carr as a referee during her match.
The promotion comes as Carr finished her tenure at WWE NXT in November.
“When I started this wrestling, crazy journey 10 years ago, I never thought that I would be the first female WWE official because that wasn’t an opportunity that existed,” she said during her last night on NXT as the crowd chanted “Thank you Jess,” and “You deserve it.”
Carr, a Baltimore native, said in a 2017 WWE video profile she began wrestling in 2009. When she finished college, she moved to Florida to train at Team 3D Academy, a training center for wrestling and sports entertainment.
She says she tried out to be a wrestler in February 2017 and then was asked if she was interested in being a referee.
“As the referee, you’re not the center of attention, you’re the super star, but I guarantee you we’re just as important,” Carr said. “We’re the third person in the match.”