Black Gymnasts in History: Black U.S. Olympians


Clockwise from top left: Luci Collins, Betty Okino, Dominique Dawes, Gabby Douglas, Annia Hatch, Tasha Schwikert
Clockwise from top left: Ron Galimore, Charles Lakes, Jair Lynch, John Orozco, Chainey Umphrey

To make the Olympic Team is the ultimate goal for a gymnast.

According to USA Gymnastics, since 1936 there have been 129 Male Olympians and 131 Female Olympians, including alternates. The Men’s Olympic teams go back to 1904 – but the events and format were quite different.

There have been several individuals who competed on multiple teams but overall there are a total of 260 U.S. Gymnastics Olympians.

Going back to 1980, there are 11 African Americans who made the USA Gymnastics Olympic Team.

Luci Collins (1980)
Ron Galimore (1980)
Charles Lakes (1988)
Betty Okino (1992)
Dominique Dawes (1992, 1996, 2000)
Jair Lynch (1992, 1996)
Chainey Umphrey (1996)
Tasha Schwikert (2000, 2004-alt.)
Annia Hatch (2004)
Gabby Douglas (2012)
John Orozco (2012)

There were a total of 11 Olympic Medals won:

Dominique Dawes (4) 1 Gold, 3 Bronze
Gabby Douglas (2) 2 Gold
Annia Hatch (2) 2 Silver
Betty Okino (1) 1 Bronze
Jair Lynch (1) 1 Silver
Tasha Schwikert (1) 1 Bronze

What an incredible achievement!

We have featured and will feature these athletes (retired) individually during this month.

As a group, this is powerful!

We are so proud and honored to feature these groundbreaking and inspirational Olympians for our Black Gymnasts in History Project.


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2 thoughts on “Black Gymnasts in History: Black U.S. Olympians

  1. Thank you so much Wendy for publishing this. No body remembers my sister, or our struggle. You have done what we have up doing years ago. God bless you and thank you.


    1. Always loved and supported by my family! Thank you so much Wendy for the acknowledgement! I am honored to be featured among these amazing athletes! -Luci Collins-Cummings

      Liked by 1 person

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