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Olympic Gold Medalist

Gabby Douglas: Biography at a Glance

  • Three-time Olympic gold medalist in both the all-around individual and team competition at the 2012 and 2016 Olympics
  • First African-American to win the Olympic gold for gymnastics
  • Author of the New York Times bestseller Grace, Gold & Glory: My Leap of Faith
  • Member of the 2011 and 2015 World Championship Team
  • First reigning Olympic all-around champion since 1981 to return to the sport and win a world championships medal

 

Olympic Gold Medalist

Gabby Douglas is a decorated American gymnast and sports icon. She has won three gold medals at the Olympics as well as two gold and one silver at the World Championships.

She is the first African American to win Olympic gold in the individual all-around competition and the first American gymnast to win gold in both the individual all-around and team competitions at the same Olympics.

Gabby began formal gymnastics training at the early age of 6 years old. By the age of 8, she had won her first major title as the 2004 Virginia State Champion. At the age of 16, she was selected to be a member of the U.S. Olympic Women’s Gymnastics team to compete in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, England. There she became the first African-American woman, as well as the first woman of color of any nationality, to win Olympic Gold in the individual all-around competition. Gabby, along with her U.S. Women’s teammates known collectively as the “Fierce Five,” also won gold in the team competition.

At the 2012 U.S. National Championships later that year, Gabby won the gold medal in uneven bars, silver in all-around, and bronze in floor. She was also a member of the gold-winning U.S. Women’s Team at the 2011 World Championships.

After the London Games, Gabby was one of the most influential female athletes in the world and was at the center of pop culture. She made an appearance on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, was featured in an interview with Oprah Winfrey and was named to Barbara Walters list as one of the “10 Most Fascinating People of 2012.” Gabby has made cameos on Disney’s hit show "Kickin’ It" and the CW’s "The Vampire Diaries." In support of President Barack Obama, she led the Pledge of Allegiance at the 2012 Democratic National Convention. Gabby was also named the 2012 Associated Press “Female Athlete of the Year.” In addition, Gabby has released two New York Times best-selling books titled "Raising the Bar" and "Grace, Gold, and Glory: My Leap of Faith." In 2013, Gabby’s life story was portrayed in the Lifetime Network’s movie of the week called "The Gabby Douglas Story."

In 2014, Gabby moved to Westerville, Ohio to begin training at Buckeye Gymnastics. In 2015, Gabby burst back onto the elite gymnastics scene after a two-year hiatus. At the World Championships that year she won silver in the individual all-around competition and gold with the U.S. Women’s team. She is the first reigning Olympic all-around champion since 1981 to return to the sport and win a World Championships medal. Gabby also secured gold at the 2016 AT&T American Cup.

At the 2016 Rio Olympics, Gabby won her third Olympic gold medal in the team competition, becoming the only all-around Olympic gold medal gymnast in US history to return to a second Olympics.

“It was so exciting to have Gabby visit Arizona State. She's a real person, so blessed and kind. It was great for the students to have the opportunity to meet an Olympian. Overall, it was a great experience.”

Arizona State University

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