Every four years the Olympic Games produce a new group of champions, but only rarely does one of these champions transcend their sport to completely capture our imaginations.
Such was the case when nineteen year old figure skater Dorothy Hamill won her Gold Medal at the 1976 Winter Games in Innsbruck, Austria. Her interpretation of music, fluid skating and infectious charm led all nine judges to unanimously vote her the winner.
Dorothy is most proud of her World Championship title in Gothenburg, Sweden following her win at the 1976 Olympic Games in Innsbruck, Austria. Everyone had advised her to retire from amateur competition, saying that even a second place would tarnish the luster of her Olympic gold. Characteristically, once she set her mind to it, she would not be dissuaded, and won.
As a professional, Dorothy has skated with many productions, including eight years with the company she helped bring to preeminence among touring ice shows, the Ice Capades. She had an unprecedented four ABC television prime time specials produced in her honor. Along with winning five consecutive World Professional titles, Dorothy has produced and starred in her own touring productions of “Cinderella – Frozen In Time”, “Hansel, Gretel, the Witch and the Cat”, and “Nutcracker On Ice” and won an Emmy for her starring role in “Romeo and Juliet.” Dorothy was inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame and the Figure Skating Hall of Fame and was very proud to run the torch into the Olympic Stadium in Salt Lake City with her friend Dick Button as well as skate the closing ceremonies with vocalist Harry Connick Jr. In addition to her skating roles, Dorothy was the first recipient of the Stars of Madison Avenue Award for her continued roles in successful advertising campaigns.
Dorothy has been serving on Kennedy Krieger’s Board of Directors since 2009. She couples her passion for ice skating with her dedication to Kennedy Krieger Institute and has created, I-Skate, a program that allows children with physical disabilities to take to the ice. Working with the Institute’s Physically Challenged Sports Program, Dorothy personally instructs the young skaters, providing them an opportunity to learn to skate.
Dorothy’s charity involvement includes the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, the International Special Olympics, Big Brothers & Sisters of America, American Cancer Society, Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, Ronald McDonald House, to name a few. Dorothy does a great deal of motivational speaking engagements to Women’s Organizations, Health Organizations, and Corporations. In September of 2010, Dorothy was the opening speaker of the prominent televised “Stand Up to Cancer” event which aired on all four major networks simultaneously. Since its launch in 2008, the campaign has raised more than $250 million in an effort to find a cure for cancer. Dorothy continues her leadership efforts as a current member of the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra’s new Women’s Leadership Council Steering Committee.
Dorothy released her memoir entitled “A Skating Life: My Story” from Hyperion Publishing, which made the NY Times Best Seller List. In her deeply moving and honest memoir, Dorothy opens up about love, family, courage, and what it means to truly win both on and off the ice.
Dorothy makes many Television appearances on talk shows and has hosted numerous TV Skating Specials, most recently, in December 2010, she hosted a TV Skating Special entitled, “Kaleidescope.”
During the Holidays, Dorothy launched her own collection of jewelry sold at Helzberg Jewelry Stores which are owned by Warren Buffett, named “Love, Help and Hope by Dorothy Hamill.” Each year, her collection will partner with a different charity. This year a portion of all sales will be donated to the Susan G. Komen foundation to find a cure for breast cancer. This line is a big success, being the best seller for Helzberg.