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Shattering The Glass Ceiling: Marlins' GM Kim Ng Ready To Take Things To The Next Level

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When the Miami Marlins announced Kim Ng, 52, as their new general manager last November, it wasn’t just big news here in South Florida.

Video Transcript

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- CBS 4 is celebrating Women's History Month throughout March by shining a spotlight on women shattering the glass ceiling in our community. When the Miami Marlins announced their new general manager last November, it wasn't just a big deal here.

- Yeah, because their choice, Kim Ng, is the first woman to hold that position in Major League Baseball. CBS Sports' Frances Wang shares her story.

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FRANCES WANG (VOICEOVER): She has more than three decades of experience, eight postseason appearances, six League Championship Series, and three World Series Championships.

KIM NG: Good morning, guys.

FRANCES WANG (VOICEOVER): Kim Ng brings an impressive resume to the Miami Marlins. Ng grew up a sports fan and played softball. But it's not something her mother wanted for her professionally.

KIM NG: Oh my gosh, my mom's a total tiger mom. She would send me articles on a weekly basis, articles on just, you know, how much more you can make with an MBA, you know, that lawyers were in high demand, you know, articles every single week about how I should not be in sports.

FRANCES WANG (VOICEOVER): The oldest of five girls, Ng grew up surrounded by women at home. At work, she was surrounded by men. But that's changing.

KIM NG: That has been so cool for me, you know? And my name has been mentioned out there for a long, long time. But it's-- it's just so awesome for me to see other women coming through the ranks, making history themselves.

- JJ. Awesome to meet you.

FRANCES WANG (VOICEOVER): And it's still something Ng herself is getting used to. Just a couple of weeks ago, she told manager Don Mattingly she wanted to give the guys more time before a woman came down to the clubhouse.

KIM NG: Because I think you're fine. He goes, we've had women strength coaches here. We have women trainers here. And I forgot because I'm always used to being the first in that type of situation. So here they are paving the way for me. So that was-- that was definitely an aha moment that, you know, we have come so far.

FRANCES WANG (VOICEOVER): Getting so far meant a lot of no's. Ng interviewed for GM jobs at least 10 times since she was first considered with the LA Dodgers. That was 16 years ago in 2005. So how did she not give up?

KIM NG: I've been asked this a number of times now. And I think my answer gets more clear every time I answer it. I would say that each time I was told no, I thought about giving up, right, because you just put yourself through so much.

And it's-- you know, it's a very public process that you go through. Sports fans know, your family knows, you know, your friends know. And then when you don't get it, they also know that.

You come back and you say, but what am I going to do, give up? You know, that's not really an option. And you just-- you know, you get back up in the saddle.

So-- and again, you know, it's-- these-- I've been very fortunate in my career. You know, I don't separate myself from that fact either in that I was incredibly fortunate to have gotten that many interviews.

FRANCES WANG (VOICEOVER): And while everyone from Michelle Obama to Ng's own childhood role model, Billie Jean King, has congratulated her on her historic accomplishment, leave it to mom to keep you humble.

KIM NG: So to show you how much of a tiger mom my mom is, when I told her, I thought she would cry, I thought she would, you know, just be so excited. She pulled her mask down and looked at me. And she got real stern and she said, "Long overdue."

FRANCES WANG: And I asked Kim how she likes Miami so far. She said, she really hasn't had a chance to experience it yet just because of COVID-19. But she has had a chance to try cafecito. And she says it kept her up until 3:00 in the morning. More importantly, she says she is so excited to get out there and get to know our community. From Marlins Park, I'm Frances Wang, CBS 4 News.