Dominique Dawes

Dominique Dawes is best known for her tremendous success as an Olympic gymnast who competed in three Olympic Games, won three medals and has a permanent place in the U.S. Olympic Committee Hall of Fame. Fans across the nation and around the world remember her as a member of the gold-medal-winning "Magnificent Seven" at the 1996 Atlanta Games, where she also won a bronze medal as she wowed the crowed with her stunning performance in the floor exercise, becoming the first female African-American gymnast to win an individual medal. She also earned a bronze medal with the U.S. team in the 1992 Barcelona Games and made a surprising comeback in the 2000 Sydney Games.


Topics

Gold Medalist, Inspiration, Leadership, Olympian, Teamwork/Teambuilding, Work Issues


Full Bio


Dominique Dawes is best known for her tremendous success as an Olympic gymnast who competed in three Olympic Games, won three medals and has a permanent place in the U.S. Olympic Committee Hall of Fame. Fans across the nation and around the world remember her as a member of the gold-medal-winning "Magnificent Seven" at the 1996 Atlanta Games, where she also won a bronze medal as she wowed the crowed with her stunning performance in the floor exercise, becoming the first female African-American gymnast to win an individual medal. She also earned a bronze medal with the U.S. team in the 1992 Barcelona Games and made a surprising comeback in the 2000 Sydney Games.

Dawes is currently the only African-American gymnast with a gold medal as well as the only American gymnast with 3 Olympic Team medals from three different Olympic Games.

Dawes’ start in gymnastics began at the age of 6. Her first and only coach, Kelli Hill quickly realized her potential, and Dawes began competing at the age of 10. She burst into the international spotlight at the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, where she was the first African-American female to qualify to an Olympic Games through the Olympic trials in Baltimore, MD. At these Games, she and her teammates captured a bronze medal.

Fans will recall that she was the gymnast that wowed the audience with her unique ‘up-and-back’ tumbling pass that consisted of 11 skills, spanning from one end of the floor to the other.

"I could never hear my floor music after my up and back tumbling pass,” Dawes recalled. “The crowd would cheer so loud; I would just have to dance to the sound of the fans. It was an amazing feeling.”

Throughout her career, Dawes has won more National Championship medals than any other athlete, male or female, since 1963, as well as numerous World Championship medals. One of Dawes’ greatest feats came when she swept all four events and won the All Around title at the 1994 National Championships.

"Winning my first national title was exciting,” Dawes said. “I was struggling for over a month each and every day of practice leading up to the Nationals. I couldn’t stay on the balance beam to save my life. My consistency and confidence were failing. I am not sure if it was the pressure of the sport getting to me, but whatever it was, it made it difficult to stay focused on my goals. One day after practice, Mrs. Norman, a parent of a teammate, took me aside and said the kindest words to me. She didn’t add pressure or give me advice about training; she showed me compassion. To this day, her words still resonate in my head and inspire me to stay focused whenever times get tough. At that moment I learned that saying the right words, at the right time, could lift someone’s spirit. Words are powerful so today I aspire to offer those same kind words to those that I come in contact with."

Dawes is much more than a champion gymnast, though. After retiring from the sport to which she dedicated 18 years of her life, Dawes has found a new passion empowering others. She is an accomplished motivational speaker, speaking to audiences of hundreds and thousands on topics focusing on passion, leadership, teamwork, health, fitness and wellness. Dawes’ message empowers vast audiences, from corporate executives to small business owners, women’s organizations to youth service organizations, and high school to college-age students; her passion and energy is captivating and leaves a lasting effect on those she inspires.

Since Dawes’ first passion in life was gymnastics, she continues to educate those on      the grassroots level. She hosts gymnastics clinics for aspiring athletes of all ages, with a focus on fundamentals, goal-setting, and mental toughness. She has served as a spokesperson for multiple local and national campaigns dealing with causes to build the self-esteem of today’s youth and women. Dawes stays involved in high-level competitive gymnastics by working as an analyst in the media, traveling to China in 2008 to report on the Beijing Olympics for Yahoo! Sports.

  Broadcast Experience

        Multimedia correspondent - for Yahoo! Sports leading up to and during the Beijing Olympics and the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver (co-host/analyst)

        Has worked on national and international gymnastics events for CBS Sports, TNT, Fox Sports Net, Comcast Sports Net, and EuroSports (in Beijing)

       

Motivational speaking?-Speaks to corporations, women’s groups, youth groups and others on leadership, work ethic and teamwork, inspiring women and youth groups on developing positive self-esteem, body image, health and wellness

(For list of organizations http://www.dominiquedawes.com/speaking.php)

Gymnastics coach?-hosts one-day clinics at gymnastics facilities around the country and private gymnastics instruction, providing proper fundamental training and inspiration for athletes of all ages

National spokesperson - served as a spokesperson for companies and campaigns dealing with issues relating to women’s health, fitness and wellness and children’s issues:

·         Dove’s Campaign for Real Beauty (phase addressing self esteem)

·         Girl Scouts of America’s Uniquely Me campaign

·         American Heart Association’s Choose to Move program

·         America’s Promise Advisory Committee (2010)

·         Autism Speaks

·         Fleet Bank’s Fleet All-Star program

·         GoGirlGo! Women’s Sports Foundation initiative (as President)

·         Girl Power! Self Esteem campaign

·        

·        

Search Speakers


 

Contact Us