Florida State Boxing Commission officials are reviewing Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) fighter Fallon Fox's license after learning she is transgender. Thirty-seven year-old Fox is the first transgender fighter on record, male or female, to compete in a MMA event. Fox revealed her gender to Sports Illustrated Monday following a quarterfinal fight win against Ericka Newsome. Fox won via knockout within 39 seconds.
Fox underwent gender reassignment surgery in 2006. She listed her gender as female on her March 1st application for a Florida fighting license and failed to disclose her transgender history. Whether or not Fox was obligated to disclose that information is another issue. Her license approval is now under investigation.
In a statement, the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation said, "The Florida State Boxing Commission is in the process of updating the rules for professional MMA events and this topic will be included in an upcoming workshop on changes to the administrative rules."
Championship Fighting Alliance founder and CEO Jorge De La Noval is standing behind Fox, though he did admit that he didn't find out about her transgender history until after her fight with Newsome. De La Noval said he has received mixed emotions from other fighters in the league:
"It has gotten to the point where some are saying, 'I'm fighting her in the next round. Am I fighting a male or female? What's the deal?'"
Regardless, De La Noval told ESPN.com, "We're not going to kick her out of the tournament. She's going to continue fighting for CFA."
It is unknown how many professional fights Fox has competed in. She was scheduled to return to the ring on April 20, but that fight has since been postponed pending the investigation.