Founded in 1974 by the YWCA of Metropolitan Denver, in cooperation with Gart Brothers Sporting Goods Co., Sportswomen of Colorado is recognized as the first community-based organization in the nation to honor female athletes at the state level.
Twenty-eight awards, plus a surprise “Sportswoman of the Year” award, were presented at the inaugural 1975 banquet, drawing 225 people to the YWCA Cultural Center.
Masters Sports awards were launched in 1979, the SWOC Hall of Fame made its debut at the 1982 banquet and the first athlete with a disability sports award was given at the 1983 banquet.
In 1984, following the 10th anniversary banquet attended by a capacity crowd of 450, the SWOC organization became independent with the support of corporate and individual sponsors.
A SWOC girls’ scholarship program, funding sports camp experiences for deserving girls continues after being initiated in the summer of 2001.
More than 2,000 women have been spotlighted for sports achievement awards.