100 Women We Love: Class Of 2019

Vanessa Torres

Photo by Zorah Olivia

The first year the X Games featured female skateboarders was 2003, and Vanessa Torres showed the world how it was done. Torres placed first and won gold in the street event. “Skateboarding chose me,” says the powerhouse, who is considered one of the top female skateboarders in the world. “It owes me nothing and has given me everything.” Torres has been featured in several women’s skateboarding videos including “AKA: Girl Skater,” “Getting Nowhere Faster,” and “Quit Your Day Job.” She also shows up in video game form in Tony Hawk’s “Proving Ground” as only the third female playable skater to appear in this series of games. Her sponsorships include Meow Skateboards, Kingswell Shop, and CHPO Brand. But, “I am not just a professional skateboarder,” Torres declares. “I recognize my privilege and am here to utilize my platform and presence in this world to uplift, support, and empower all of you, as you have done so lovingly for me.” Torres has always felt inspired and encouraged to be her “most authentic self,” she tells GO. The most rewarding aspect of her work, she says, is all about recognizing the importance of her presence, the power and impact that has on her community, and the “the privilege of having a voice to shine light and bring awareness on what really matters,” she says. “I see you. I love you. Thank you.” —JDG


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