For Trish Adora, it’s all about respect.

Growing up with five brothers, Adora “naturally watched wrestling and fought a lot.” But it was Jacqueline Moore – the first Black woman to win a title in then-WWF – who inspired her to step in the ring.

“[It was the] first time I’d seen a woman wrestle a guy and I thought that was the coolest thing,” she said of Moore, who also held the WWF Cruiserweight Championship.

And just the mere presence of Adora in the wrestling industry is exactly what Moore previously told she hoped her career had accomplished.

“I hope I opened a lot of doors for women of color,” Moore said in a 2022 interview. “Young girls and young ladies can be inspired by what I did for the business, some sense that I’m an inspiration for them. And I hope women today – they are main eventers now.”

Not only are they main eventers, but companies like Canada’s Femmes Fatales and Smash Wrestling are joining forces to put on Girls Next Door, all-female showcase.

At Toronto’s Rec Room on June 25, Adora will face Vanessa Kraven in a first-time matchup.

“I love being a part of all women’s shows,” Adora said. “It’s very empowering for me.”

Smash promoter Sebastian Suave said in a statement that Femmes Fatales and Smash “have long been platforms” for Canadian female talent to face top-tier athletes.

“In 2023, Trish Adora fits that bill,” Suave said. “She’s at all the right places and praised by all the right people. This first time encounter will be a great representation of the standard of women’s wrestling we aspire to see in the coming year.”

Trish Adora with the Pan-Afrikan World title.

Trish Adora with the Pan-Afrikan World title.

Breaking in and breaking out

Ironically, Adora broke into the business in 2016 at the hands of the Dudley Boyz, who just happened to induct Moore into the WWE Hall of Fame that same year.

“Respect for the business is really something that they hammer home,” said Adora, who started training at Team 3D Academy after eight years in the U.S. Army. “They do have those old school rules, but using new school tools to be able to impart that wisdom.”

With less than a decade under her proverbial belt, Adora also can lay claim as the inaugural Pan-Afrikan World Diaspora champion – a title she has held for three years and counting.

“That’s such a huge honor for me to be able to have a traveling championship considered a world title by PWI,” Adora said. “That’s a huge honor. I believe a first of its kind. And it’s just helping me and helping my community.”

When it comes to the Pan-Afrikan World Diaspora championship, Adora said its significance is that it’s important for there to be a place for everyone to go.

“It’s been interesting since breaking into the business in 2016. Nowadays things are so much different … so many places are so inclusive,” Adora said, noting there’s still work to be done.

Adora signed with Ring of Honor in September 2021, shortly before the AEW owner Tony Khan bought the promotion the following March.

“That was huge for me,” Adora said. “It was a really great opportunity for me to work with people that I look up to and people that I got to train under.”

Though not signed with the company anymore, Adora said she still has a good working relationship with the company and in recent months, she has been featured on Khan’s ROH under the AEW banner, as well as AEW Rampage.

Team 3D likened to military

Adora served in the Army from 2008 to 2016 both as a custodial mechanic and an MP (military police). She joined the service after going with a coworker to speak to a recruiter. The benefits, particularly in regard to education, contributed to her enlisting.

After six years in the service, the transition into training with the Dudleys was relatively seamless, she said.

“The training, especially under Bubba Ray and D-Von, mirrored that [the military] pretty much,” Adora said. “They ran a pretty tight ship.”

And the discipline from her military service has transcended her wrestling career.

“I didn’t think that wrestling would be this emotionally and mentally taxing, and I feel as though I have the tools to be able to navigate that … [and that I’m] operating from a place that those kinds of values were instilled in me,” she said.

TOP PHOTO: Trish Adora at Ring of Honor taped at the United Center, in Chicago, on Saturday, June 17, 2023. Photo by George Tahinos,