Kylee James is no stranger to the sports scene in Los Angeles. As a long-time USC Football fan and season ticket holder, Kylee sees sports as a way to bring people of all different backgrounds together — especially during a year that forced many people to stay apart. Now, as an Angel City FC Member, Kylee can’t wait to be in the stadium with other fans supporting a team she describes as “a game-changer” for the NWSL and women’s soccer.
One of her favorite memories was introducing her mom to women’s soccer when the USWNT came to town for their 2019 Victory Tour. The mother-daughter duo has been watching NWSL and USWNT matches together ever since and is eagerly anticipating cheering for ACFC in the stands in 2022, alongside Kylee’s supporters group, Rebellion 99.
As a prosthetics and orthotics professional, Kylee works everyday to help empower and enhance the lives of her patients by designing and fabricating prosthetic limbs and braces. She is motivated by the feeling of “literally getting someone back on their feet” and serving a wide variety of patients each day. Her clinic is part of an ongoing project to collect new or used prosthetic components to be restored and donated around the world to those in need.
If you would like to support people living with amputations, Kylee suggests donating to organizations like the Range of Motion Project, which provides prosthetic care to individuals without access to those services.
This is Kylee James.
Q: Tell us a little bit about your job in the prosthetic & orthotic field. What do you like most about it?
A: The field of prosthetics and orthotics is one of the most diverse and dynamic allied health practices out there! It blends patient care with the design and fabrication process of prosthetic limbs and bracing options that can enhance and empower our patients lives. I think I have one of the best jobs in the world, there’s really nothing like the feeling of literally getting someone back on their feet- or foot! I’ve had days where I’ve seen a 99 year old woman and a 4 month old baby. The variety in my work day, the people I serve, and the challenges they face mean that I’m always on my toes and constantly motivated to find the next right answer.
Q: April was Limb Loss Awareness Month. What did you and your clinic do to give back last month? How can other people support?
A: April was Limb Loss Awareness Month and one thing most people are not aware of is that 9 out of 10 people living with amputations worldwide do not have access to prosthetic care. In light of this, my clinic, along with clinics around the country, worked to collect new or lightly used prosthetic components and salvage old prostheses to be safely restored and donated internationally. This collection effort, while amped up in April, is a part of an ongoing effort every day to provide high quality prosthetic care to access-limited people with amputations globally. Everyone is able to partake in Limb Loss Awareness whether that's through self education, advocacy, or donations to organizations supporting people with amputations like the Range of Motion Project
Q: What does it mean to be a sports fan, especially in LA?
A: Sports have been such a huge part of my life, both as a fan and in participation. With so many things going on every day, especially recently, sports have always been a constant. The sports culture in LA is unreal! In a city that is so diverse, with endless things to do and see, sports can bring us together- even if that means together with our cross town rivals in a freeway series. We have such a history for high caliber teams and some of the most iconic sports complexes in the country. What’s not to love?! I’ve grown up going to USC football games and am a current season ticket holder myself, there’s really nothing like a night game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum! One of the best moments during a game comes in the 4th quarter when the 1984 Olympic torch gets lit to the sound of the Spirit of Troy marching band. It’s a must see for any NCAA football sports fan!
Q: What is your favorite soccer memory?
A: One of my favorite memories was watching the 2015 Women’s World Cup. I was touring Yellowstone and the Black Hills for a couple weeks with my family and given the natural environment, I remember there being a scarcity of tvs to watch the games. Any time we could find a restaurant or hotel lobby that was playing the game there were hoards of people gathered together to cheer on our team! It was one of the first times I really witnessed women’s sports being celebrated in such an enormous and authentic way.
Q: Who is your favorite soccer player?
A: Woah, big question! I absolutely love a comeback story so I’d have to go with Ali Krieger, she has a few to her name! There’s also something so incredible about her relentless pursuit of her passions. That’s a quality that you can take anywhere in life and find success!
Q: How did you become interested in Angel City FC?
A: I became interested in ACFC as soon as it was announced. I’ve been hoping for an NWSL team to support locally for years! I couldn’t be more excited for the inaugural season and what it means for the future growth in women’s sports.
Q: What does it mean to you to have a professional women’s soccer team in Los Angeles?
A: Having a professional women’s soccer team in Los Angeles is going to be a real game changer- literally! Not only because it’s a testament to the continued growth of the NWSL, and women’s professional sports in general, but because the people behind the scenes are putting in the work to do it the right way. The platform that ACFC has is truly unique and has the potential to lead the way for future success of the league, have a positive social impact, and create a new standard in the sports industry.
Q: Are you excited to take your mom to ACFC games?
A: I’m so excited to attend ACFC games with my mom! I took her to her first soccer game in 2019 when the World Cup Victory Tour came to the Rose Bowl. Ever since we’ve been streaming NWSL and USWNT games together! She’s always enjoyed going to sporting events but that had been her first professional women’s game and it was such a great and progressive moment to share with her.
Q: Can you tell us about your experience at the USWNT Victory Tour in 2019?
A: Attending the Victory Tour was incredible! The energy at that game was absolutely amazing, and such a testament to the loyalty and support of the USWNT fans. I actually met Kobe Bryant at that game, he was attending it with his daughters and it was such a beautiful moment to see him showing up and supporting women athletes, something he had always been such an outspoken advocate for.
Q: What are you looking forward to most from Angel City’s inaugural 2022 season?
A: I’m excited for all of it! I can’t wait to get into that stadium together with all these incredible fans who have supported this team before it was even officially a team when the “Bring the NWSL to LA” movement was just a dream. One of the most exciting aspects of the 2022 season is what it means for the future of the NWSL and women’s sports. This can, and will be, huge!