'Heather the Heat' Hardy - The "first lady" of Brooklyn Boxing / by daphne youree

The other day I had the most amazing experience meeting and photographing Heather Hardy @heathertheheat - a truly phenomenal woman, mother, fighter. Here is her journey:

"My name is Heather "the Heat" Hardy and I am 35 years old. I am a divorced, single mom of my 12 year old daughter, Annie. I started boxing at 28, while I was right in the middle of my divorce, living with my sister and both of our kids. We were two single moms, not getting child support, doing what we had to do to get by. At one point I had worked up to 6 jobs, while my sister stayed home and cared for both of our kids. They opened a little karate school in my neighborhood and my sister urged me to go. Within three weeks I had my first fight, and it was like I knew what I was meant to do for the first time in my life. It was the first time I was good at something. Haven't been able to get me out of the ring since.
In eighteen months as an amateur I won eight titles- including the USA boxing nationals as well as the NYC golden gloves.
Since turning pro, I am 19-0 and a two division WBC international champion. I Am the FIRST woman to be signed to a long term contract by DiBella Entertainment. The FIRST woman to box in the Barclays Center. The FIRST female to be featured on a PBC undercard and the FIRST female to be televised on a PBC ubdercard. I am the "First Lady" of Brooklyn Boxing."