KISSIMMEE, Fla. – For much of her life, Hailey Davidson believed she could be one of two things: a competitive golfer or her true self. She didn’t think she could be both.
For many years, she used her success in golf to suppress feelings about her gender identity. However, thanks to recent gender reassignment surgery in January, coupled with hormone therapy, she says she finally feels whole and is going after her dream of making the LPGA Tour.
“I never thought I could play golf competitively as a trans-woman so I always thought it was golf or being myself,” Davidson said.
Davidson, of Kissimmee, has been playing golf since she was 13 years old.
Davidson recently won a golf event on a ladies’ mini-tour. She’s believed to be the first transgender woman to win a professional tournament.
“It gives me so much hope,” she said.
Davidson is in talks with the LPGA to discuss eligibility. The Tour does not require its athletes to be female at birth.
“All those kids that are being told that they can’t do something right now I want every single one to know that there is hope because one, I will do and two, I’m going to make sure that by the end of my lifetime everyone else feels equally enough to be able to live their dreams as well,” Davidson said.
She sat down with News 6 sports director Jamie Seh to discuss her pursuit of golf’s highest level and the arguments surrounding transgender athletes and sports.
Hear Davidson’s story by watching the video at the top of this story.