Photographer and MV Parent Kate Parker Shares Life Lessons and Inspiration in New Book Play Like a Girl

Sep 2, 2020 | All School, Build People Up, Come to Play, courage over comfort, Highlights, IMAMUSTANG, Impact, Maverick, Multiplier, Parents, Share the Well

Kate Parker is a former collegiate soccer player, Ironman, professional photographer, author, wife, and Mount Vernon mom to two Mustangs, Ella (Class of 2023) and Alice (Class of 2027).

Already a national best-selling author, Kate’s third book PLAY LIKE A GIRL: Life Lessons from the Soccer Field captures the joy, confidence, focus, and camaraderie that come with playing soccer.

Kate grew up playing soccer, and went on to play at the collegiate level at Wake Forest University. Now, she’s the mom to two soccer-loving daughters.

“I’ve played this sport basically my whole life and am so thankful for the lessons and the characteristics that sometimes earned me labels like ‘difficult’ or ‘pushy’ off the field actually helped to make me a good – no great – soccer player,” Kate shares.

“All of the parts of me that other people tried to soften or change, my coaches loved. My loudness and aggression helped me win balls and score goals… and sometimes get yellow cards, but that’s another story.”

“I desperately didn’t want my girls, or any girls, to lose those amazing parts of themselves. Sport helps our girls to keep their superpowers.”

In addition to her own daughters, Ella and Alice, other Mount Vernon Mustangs Emma Markland (Class of 2021) and Caroline Curry (Class of 2023) were also photographed for the book.

In chapter 8 of the book – The Better Team Doesn’t Always Win – Emma shares, “After six concussions, I had to stop competing. It’s not what I had planned. But soccer memories and life lessons are still part of who I am, and soccer will always be my passion even though I am no longer wearing #11.”

The book explores all highs and lows that come with playing a sport. The wins and the losses. The injuries. The friendships and teamwork. The life lessons.

Also photographed in the book are members of the US Deaf Women’s National soccer team, professional soccer players like Megan Rapinoe, athletes from Wake Forest University, girls who have just started playing the game, and women who have been playing for years, just to name a few.

Kate shared, “Play Like a Girl was created to help girls and women recognize the many lessons that we can learn from a sport, specifically soccer. What we find out about ourselves on the field can be so valuable to us off the field.”

Kate’s previous two books, STRONG IS THE NEW PRETTY: A Celebration of Girls Being Themselves and THE HEART OF A BOY: Celebrating the Strength and Spirit of Boyhood both received national recognition, and shared the same inspirational themes, encouraging all readers to be 100% themselves, and to be proud of that.

Learn more about Kate, all three of her books, her philanthropic endeavors, and more at her website –