Assistant coach Katie Sowers will not be returning to the San Francisco 49ers subsequent season

SANTA CLARA, Calif .– Katie Sowers, one of the NFL’s first full-time female assistants and their first openly gay coach, won’t be returning to the San Francisco 49ers next season, she said on social media Thursday.

Her contract expires after four seasons with the team as an offensive assistant and works mainly with receiver trainer Wes Welker in this position group.

“Dear Faithful, we’ve been through so much together in the last 4 years and words will never express how much your love and acceptance meant to me,” Sowers wrote on Instagram on Thursday. “I will forever cherish the memories and hearing of your stories over the years. Together we made a difference in this world. You were there every step of the way … from my first day at Levi’s to the Super Bowl and.” even when my father died, you all supported me.

“Change is inevitable in this life. Enjoy every minute and cherish the memories, because time goes by faster than you know. One last walk out of the tunnel. I am forever grateful for my time in SF … until we meet again #foreverfaithful “

After interning with the Atlanta Falcons for the 2016 season, Sowers joined the 49ers as part of their 2017 Bill Walsh NFL Coaching Diversity Fellowship. At the end of that program, the team kept her as a seasonal offensive assistant.

The 34-year-old Sowers has been an offensive assistant for the past three seasons. This made her the franchise’s first full-time coach and the second full-time coach in the league’s history.

While her role with the Niners had mostly to do with receivers, she was also involved in setting up the game with all offensive skill players.

In February, Sowers became the first female NFL team member to train in a Super Bowl.

“As the first woman in the Super Bowl, it’s surreal,” Sowers said. “It really is. But what I want to keep saying is that even though I am the first, the most important thing is that I am not the last and that we will keep building it.”

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