Skip to main content

Bolton-Holifield, Ruthie (1967—)

Bolton-Holifield, Ruthie (1967—)

African-American basketball player who was named the 1991 USA Basketball Female Player of the Year. Name variations: Ruthie Bolton. Born Alice Ruth Bolton on May 27, 1967, in Lucedale, Mississippi; one of 20 children of Reverend Linwood and Leola Bolton; Attended McClain High School in McClain, Massachusetts; graduated from Auburn University with a degree in Exercise Physiology, 1990; married Mark Holifield, in 1991.

During her 1986–90 sojourn at Auburn University, Ruthie Bolton-Holifield, a 5'9" guard, was selected to the 1988 and 1989 Southeastern Conference (SEC) All-Academic Teams; was chosen for the 1989 ALL-SEC second team; won three SEC championships; was named to the 1988 and 1989 NCAA Mideast Region All-Tournament Teams and the 1988 NCAA Final Four All-Tournament Team; made four NCAA Tournament appearances and advanced to the NCAA championship game twice (1989 and 1990); and was named the 1991 USA Basketball Female Player of the Year. Bolton-Holifield was a member of many USA Basketball teams, winning a team gold medal with the World University team in 1991, the team bronze with the World Championship team and a team gold with the Goodwill team, both 1994.

At a time when an after-college career for women basketball players in the U.S. was nonexistent, Bolton-Holifield continued playing overseas. Her initial professional season was with Visby in Sweden (1989–90). She then became the first American woman to play in Hungary when she took on guard duty with the Tungstrum (1991–92). From 1992 to 1995, she played for Erreti Faenz in Italy, then signed with the Galatsaray in Turkey for the 1996–97 season. In 1995–96, Bolton-Holifield was a member of the USA Basketball Women's National Team that toured the world, culminating in a 1996 team gold medal at the Olympics in Atlanta. In January 22, 1997, she signed with the Women's National Basketball Association (WNBA) to play for the Sacramento Monarchs. In the WNBA's inaugural year, Bolton-Holifield had a spectacular season, scoring 34 points in two games, averaging 19.4 (PPG) points per game, along with 5.8 rebounds, and 2.6 assists. She was named to the 1997 All-WNBA First Team.

Cite this article
Pick a style below, and copy the text for your bibliography.

  • MLA
  • Chicago
  • APA

"Bolton-Holifield, Ruthie (1967—)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . 22 Apr. 2019 <>.

"Bolton-Holifield, Ruthie (1967—)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . (April 22, 2019).

"Bolton-Holifield, Ruthie (1967—)." Women in World History: A Biographical Encyclopedia. . Retrieved April 22, 2019 from

Learn more about citation styles

Citation styles gives you the ability to cite reference entries and articles according to common styles from the Modern Language Association (MLA), The Chicago Manual of Style, and the American Psychological Association (APA).

Within the “Cite this article” tool, pick a style to see how all available information looks when formatted according to that style. Then, copy and paste the text into your bibliography or works cited list.

Because each style has its own formatting nuances that evolve over time and not all information is available for every reference entry or article, cannot guarantee each citation it generates. Therefore, it’s best to use citations as a starting point before checking the style against your school or publication’s requirements and the most-recent information available at these sites:

Modern Language Association

The Chicago Manual of Style

American Psychological Association

  • Most online reference entries and articles do not have page numbers. Therefore, that information is unavailable for most content. However, the date of retrieval is often important. Refer to each style’s convention regarding the best way to format page numbers and retrieval dates.
  • In addition to the MLA, Chicago, and APA styles, your school, university, publication, or institution may have its own requirements for citations. Therefore, be sure to refer to those guidelines when editing your bibliography or works cited list.