WALKERSVILLE, Md. (WDVM) – During her time as a Sports Performance Graduate Assistant with Georgia College, Liz Pardo rekindled her love for baseball; sparking her choice to move forward with a professional career within the sport.

“And I was like – ‘so you’re going to tell me I told you so’.” said Liz, when speaking about when she would share that revelation with her mentor, “And he started laughing right there, and he was like ‘you want to go professional don’t you?’. And I was like yeah.”

Liz Pardo is the first woman in the Baltimore Oriole’s minor league coaching system – in her second season as a strength and conditioning coach – this year for the Delmarva Shorebirds. And she got her start here in Frederick County, Maryland.

“She just decided to really go all out into her recovery -her post rehab- and her performance piece, and she fell in love with the idea of training.” said Shannon Wallace, co-owner of Mad Fitness in Frederick, Maryland.

After recovering from a shoulder injury during her days as a field hockey player at Walkersville high school – Liz pursued that passion for training in her undergrads at Shenandoah; before her path took her to Georgia College.

“When I was at Georgia College for my Master’s degree, I worked with the baseball guys there.” said Liz, “Baseball has always been one of my favorite sports but being the strength coach for that team, it kind of brought my love back.”

A love for the game, coupled with a little help from Shannon Wallace.

“He pretty much forced me to get all of my certifications.”, said Liz, when asked what kind of role Shannon played early in her career.

“She calls me every week – ‘Coach, what’s next? What book can I read next?’. She has a tremendous drive to be successful.”, said Shannon, speaking to his relationship with Liz.

Liz’s drive stems from her memories growing up around sports; and the challenges that came with being a woman in that space.

“I don’t want a little girl to feel the way I did growing up – so that’s what drives me.” said Liz, “It’s not generally whatever- everything I do is for that little girl that is watching me do what I do.”