Harrison Browne, photo from usatoday.com
- Transgender man Harrison Browne had announced to retire from playing hockey professionally.
- Browne was part of the Buffalo Beauts and played in the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) from seasons 2015 to 2017.
- Known previously as Hailey, she came as a transgender man during her second year, becoming the first professional athlete in the history of team sports to do so.
Former hockey player, who came out as transgender man while playing for the women’s professional league, has announced his retirement.
According to a transgender news stories posted by the Buffalo News last April 30, trans man Harrison Browne had announced his decision to retire from playing hockey professionally.
Browne was part of the Buffalo Beauts and played in the National Women’s Hockey League (NWHL) from seasons 2015 to 2017.
Known previously as Hailey, she came as a transgender man during her second year and becoming the first professional athlete in a team sports in history to do so.
Dani Rylan, the commissioner of NWHL, considered Browne a champion both in the sports and for trans rights.
“Harrison is a champion for transgender rights and retires as an Isobel Cup champion hockey player,” Rylan said. “He is going to be missed on the ice, but he has left quite a legacy from his three years in our league. We want to thank Brownie for everything he has done in the game and wish him the best in the road ahead.”
Browne, under coach and former Sabres forward Ric Seiling, was part of the championship team that won the Isobel Cup in 2017 and with the Metropolitan Riveters for the current season.
In the letter that he penned announcing his retirement, he thanked the people who were instrumental in his remarkable playing career.
“These past three years have been some of the best of my life and that is solely due to the fact that the NWHL has existed,” he wrote. “I am so proud to have stood as the first transgender athlete in professional hockey and could have never done that without the support of the NWHL, so thank you to everyone who made being my authentic self in hockey a reality.”
He also took the opportunity to acknowledge both Rylan and Seiling.
“A special shout out to Dani Rylan – our commissioner for never skipping a beat in making sure one of her players could play as himself; to Chris Botta for helping me navigate the press aspect of my decision; and to Ric Seiling for always treating me with respect and advocating for me,” he said.
In addition, he thanked the Buffalo Beauts for giving him a chance to be part of the team.
“Thank you to the Buffalo Beauts organization for giving me a chance to make my professional hockey dreams come true,” he remarked. “I will always cherish my time in Buffalo and as a Beaut.”
Lastly, he expressed his gratitude for the fans who supported him throughout his playing career and transition.
“Thank you to all the fans out there who have shown me support. I can’t thank you enough for all that you have done for me and the LGBTQ community as a whole,” he said. “You have shown anyone struggling to be themselves that they don’t have to be afraid … that there will always be people out there who will support you and love you no matter what. Thank you for allowing me to feel comfortable in my own skin and cheering me on as Harrison.”