By Edith Manzanares
Marlen Esparza’s passion for boxing began at a young age. At 12 years old, she would spend three hours a day working out with no difficulties since she loved the sport. Esparza and her parents of Mexican descent were born in Juarez, MX, but soon thereafter moved to Houston, Texas.
Growing up in a middle-class home; her parents were always supportive. “I’ve always wanted to make money to support my family just so money would not have to be an issue but I never thought I would do that through boxing. Boxing is just what I love to do” Esparza said.
It soon became a full-time career for her in Pasadena at the age of 16, but the beginning stage was difficult since she had to convince people to believe. “People will never like everything about you. You can be the most beautiful peach, ripe and perfect, but there will always be someone who doesn’t like peaches. I ignore what people think about me unless they believe in me” Esparza said.
Graduating from Pasadena High School in 2007, Esparza was the student body president and graduated in the top 2% of her class. Since then, she has been a role model and positive influence to females pursuing their dreams.
The doors opened up for Esparza in 2012 when she was able to participate in the first-ever Women’s Olympic boxing tournament…