Brandi Rhodes was recently interviewed by Black Wrestling Alliance about her position as the CBO of the soon to be launched AEW. Highlights are below.
Being AEW's CBO:
“A lot of people don’t know my background. When you get upset about something, do your research before you get upset about things. But you know, I have degrees in communications and journalism. I had full rank scholarship to the University of Michigan, which anybody in the north will tell you, I don’t know anyone that has had that at the University of Michigan, which tells you that I was a stand up student. So, being able to have that and scholarships at the University of Miami, like I said, I’ve studied journalism, I’ve been in the media…I was a reporter, I’ve been an anchor, self produced writer, so I’ve had a lot of experience in a lot of stuff that comes in the direction. Another aspect of being CBO is that you’re a face for the company and a lot of work that I’ve been doing in the last seven years in entertainment that has been very positive, so it’s always good to have a face that is comfortable with media and very well ingrained with what they are doing. I do see things like people saying “There are people more qualified.” Really? I’d love to see them. Someone who has this much wrestling experience and able to do all sides to the job. Sure, there are people who have worked in corporate America for many more years than me, but they have to have the wrestling bones in order for this to work. That’s why a lot of times they are more familiar with entertainment but not familiar with sports. Had a great career there but when they come here they’re like a fish out of water.”
Celebrating Being The Only Black Woman Ever To Work WrestleMania and Wrestle Kingdom:
“I think it’s something that I have to celebrate a lot on my own. It’s something that I see as a big accomplishment that has never been done. It’s amazing! I do think a lot of times it’s forgotten, especially in the black community because I’m married to someone who’s not black. So I think it’s important not to not celebrate something because of who their families are. It’s always great to continue to recognise when these things happen because they only happen once. And maybe you don’t particularly like someone or you don’t see them a certain way because of their affiliations and stuff but we can recognise things as we as a community have been able to do.”
Being A Voice For Black Athletes in AEW:
“One thing I can say is that I feel like I offer a voice in those areas. A lot of people think that if something doesn’t happen right away with women or with a particular minority, they are overlooked and they’re not important and that is so much not the case. But it’s important that there’s a voice there that can be the one to say “Hey, have you considered this person? Or what about this group?” I am able to have that voice. It is a collaborative effort. I know that some of the ideas that I have are not always going to be seen as a good idea by everybody but, that’s just life. We learn at some point that you don’t always get your way. But I have noticed that somewhere in the beginning that, in our collaborative effort that I am being heard. Which is wonderful! It shows that everybody wants it to be the best it can be and everybody wants to do as much as we can for good wrestling. So, if there are areas where things can turn, we can turn them and we hope we can work with everybody who is of interest and are really really great at wrestling. I do think with wrestling as a whole, one of the tough things, especially for women, more for the black community is that a lot of the times it’s hard to get attention or you’re working in places where it’s not being streamed. One thing that I would say for people who may hear this interview and be interested in trying to get their stuff looked at more, make sure you have a thriving social media and it’s geared towards what you want to do, because if you’re a wrestler and you’re fantastic and I can’t get that from your Instagram or I can’t gather that from your Twitter, there’s no clips anywhere, you’re working against yourself.”