Popati A. Wing

Popati Wing, who is best known as “T”, started playing softball at the Robert Taylor Homes on Chicago’ Southside when she was nine years old. Even though she had no formal training or coaching, she did have the one thing that great athletes possess ‘ talent. She played third base as the only girl to play with the boys. She honed her softball skills by playing the game “strikeout” with her brother before and after school. Her arm strength, speed, and hitting made her a top player at pitcher, shortstop, and left field. She didn’t play softball in high school because the sport wasn’t offered. But she has played with countless women’s and co-ed teams in parks across Illinois and other states. She has earned numerous awards, including league MVP honors and has been selected as captain of many teams. She played with Shinnick’s Bad Attitude, Force, Mixed Company, Family, Rookies, and Miceli’s Mob to name just a few. While playing with the Blasters from Waukegan, she hit the longest homerun by a female in Canada. That hit earned her a spot in the Guinness Book of World Records. She tried out for a women’s semi-pro 12-inch team in the ‘80s without a glove. True to the nature of Chicago’s “no gloves” tradition, she caught with her bare hands. She made the team but was placed on the farm team so that she could learn to catch with a glove. During her high school days in the late ‘70s, she ran track and competed in meets both instate and out of state with Olympic Gold medalist Wilma Rudolph as he coach Her love of sports continues to this day. She still plays volleyball, racquetball, and 11 and 12-inch softball. Except now she uses a glove. Popati holds a bachelor’s degree from Chicago State University and is working on a master’s degree in Public Administration at Illinois Institute of Technology. She has been employed as a budget manager at IIT for the past twenty-five years.