Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Pat Nordell papers, 1957-2000 (Collection LSC 2143)
LSC 2143  
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (65.91 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Restrictions on Access
  • Restrictions on Use and Reproduction
  • Preferred Citation
  • Provenance/Source of Acquisition
  • Processing Information
  • Biography/History
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Title: Pat Nordell papers
    Collection number: LSC 2143
    Contributing Institution: UCLA Library Special Collections
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 4.8 linear ft. (6 document boxes, 6 flat boxes)
    Date (inclusive): 1957-2000
    Abstract: Pat Nordell is a Los Angeles-based lesbian sports coach and photographer. Nordell was a star athlete and popular personality through her high school years and afterwards in amateur and intramural sports in the Midwest. After finishing a teaching degree at the Illinois State Normal University and a bachelors of science at the University of Arizona at Tucson, she made the shift to California in 1960 to start her teaching career. The bulk of this career was spent at Westchester High School where her outstanding record as coach of Varsity Girls Basketball, Girls Softball, Women’s Track and Field and ultimately Men’s Track and Field, gained her considerable recognition and made her one of the first women coaches of men's athletic teams in Los Angeles. As a strong advocate against gender discrimination in sports, Nordell initiated and won a protracted law suit against the Los Angeles Unified School District for equal pay for women coaches. This collection, comprising of comprehensive scrapbooks and photographs, provides a record of the professional public life, feminist advocacy and private life of Pat Nordell.
    Language of Materials: Materials are in English.
    Physical Location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

    Restrictions on Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Open for research. Advance notice required for access. Contact the UCLA Library Special Collections Reference Desk for paging information.

    Restrictions on Use and Reproduction

    Property rights to the physical object belong to the UCLA Library Special Collections. Literary rights, including copyright, are retained by the creators and their heirs. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine who holds the copyright and pursue the copyright owner or his or her heir for permission to publish where The UC Regents do not hold the copyright.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Pat Nordell papers (Collection LSC 2143). UCLA Library Special Collections, Charles E. Young Research Library.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Provenance unknown, 2013.
    This collection is part of an outreach and collection-building partnership between the June L. Mazer Lesbian Archives,   the UCLA Center for the Study of Women (CSW)   and the UCLA Library.  

    Processing Information

    Processed by Pallavi Sriram in 2013 in the Center for Primary Research and Training (CFPRT), with assistance from Jillian Cuellar.
    The processing of this collection was generously supported by Arcadia. 

    Biography/History

    Patricia Nordell is a Los Angeles based lesbian sports coach and photographer. Nordell was born in May 1932 and raised in Wheaton, Illinois. As is evidenced in the collection, she was a star athlete and popular personality through her high school years at Wheaton Community High School, from which she graduated in 1950. Nordell stayed in the Midwest after high school, playing amateur and intramural sports in Wheaton and Chicago, excelling in a number of sports including basketball, volleyball, baseball and bowling. Nordell completed a teaching degree at the Illinois State Normal University from September 1956 to June 1957. She continued her college education at the University of Arizona at Tucson from which she graduated with a Bachelor of Science in 1960. Both in Illinois and Arizona, Nordell continued her engagement with sports, playing namely intramural volleyball and basketball.
    Nordell entered her first teaching position almost immediately upon completion of her undergraduate degree. She made the shift to California in 1960 to start her teaching career at Coachella Valley Union High in Southern California where she taught Physical Education for three years. By 1972, she had moved to Los Angeles and began teaching at Westchester High School (WHS), where she continued for the remaining 16 years of her career. Nordell coached Varsity Girls Basketball, Girls Softball and Women’s Track and Field from 1973 onwards, leading the basketball team to their first-ever California State championship win a few years later. In 1980, she received recognition from both the California Coaches Association and the National High School Athletic Coaches Association as Track & Field ‘Coach of the Year’ for her outstanding record at WHS: a 45-1 dual meet record including 6 Western league titles, 2 LA city titles (1977 and 1979) and the State championship (1979). The same year, Nordell started coaching Men’s Track and Field at WHS, making her one of the first women coaches of men's athletic teams in Los Angeles.
    Perhaps due to her own experience playing women’s sports in school, college and otherwise, Nordell was highly invested in combating gender discrimination in sports; she fought against the notion that girls shouldn’t play sports considered to be “unfeminine” and was an advocate for women teachers and coaches, whom she felt were trivialized. She publically spoke out against gender bias in pay scales and most importantly, initiated a law suit in the 1970’s against the Los Angeles Unified School District for equal pay for women coaches. She ultimately won the suit in the late 1980’s.

    Scope and Content

    This collection gives a view of both the professional public life and private life of LA-based lesbian sports coach, Pat Nordell. The collection is comprised of scrapbooks and photographs. The scrapbooks provide a comprehensive record of Nordell’s long sports, teaching and coaching career, while the photographs provide a view into Nordell’s personal life especially after her retirement in 1988 – relationships, love for outdoor activity, and her involvement in gay and lesbian communities in Southern California. Together, these materials provide a multi-dimensional view of Pat Nordell’s life and career.

    Organization and Arrangement

    Collection is arranged into two series:
    • Series 1: Scrapbooks, 1952-1987
    • Series 2: Photographs, 1968-2000
    Series are arranged chronologically.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Nordell, Pat --Archives.
    Women coaches (Athletics) --California --Archival resources.
    Lesbian activists --California --Archival resources.

    Genres and Forms of Material

    photographs.
    scrapbooks.