Perfect 10 Countdown: Going for the Gold Gala 2018 – DAY 9 – Nadia Comaneci

It’s DAY 9 of the Going for the Gold Gala Perfect 10 Countdown!

This year, one of our two Champions Award honorees is Olympic gymnast Nadia Comaneci!

Did Nadia inspire you? If so, you can pay it forward for deserving urban youth who want to learn gymnastics. Nadia will be honored at the 2018 Going for the Gold Gala, which benefits the Wendy Hilliard Gymnastics Foundation .
The WHGF has provided free and low cost gymnastics for over 17,000 youth.
Please help us reach our goal – by donating in honor of Nadia who so inspired the world to love gymnastics!

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Thank you Nadia for your ongoing support of the Wendy Hilliard Gymnastics Foundation!

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We are reaching far and wide for support of our gymnastics programs that have already served over 17,000 youth with free and low cost gymnastics!

Every dollar goes to our gymnastics programs and scholarships – so donate here and please join us!

Find out more info about our Going for the Gold gala here.

 

Take a look at last year’s event

 

Click here to see ALL of our Perfect 10 Countdown posts.

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Perfect 10 Countdown: Going for the Gold Gala 2018 – DAY 8 – Champion Athletes

It’s DAY 8 of the Going for the Gold Gala Perfect 10 Countdown!

We are lucky at the WHGF to have the support of so many champion athletes and trend setters!

From WHGF athletes to Olympic icons, we’re excited that these athletes will be in attendance at this year’s gala:
Olivia Boisson Ballet WHGF Alumna, NYC Ballet
Niahlah Hope Gymnastics WHGF Alumna, Professional Stunt Woman Black Panther & The Avengers
Gail Marquis Basketball 1976 Olympic Medalist, the first year women’s basketball was played in the Olympics
Audrey Smaltz Fashion Fashion Expert Extraordinaire
Collette Smith Football First ever Female Coach for the NY Jets
Phaidra Knight Rugby Three- time Rugby World Cup Participant and Player of the Decade Award Winner
Sharon Monplaisir Fencing Three-Time Olympic Fencer
Alexis Page Gymnastics WHGF Alumna, 3 Time US National Team, National-International Gold Medalist
Paul Williams Handball US Handball Association and NY State Hall of Fame Member
Dawn Riley Sailing First Female America’s Cup Captain
Rose Voisk Gymnastics 1948 Olympic Gymnast
Abie Grossfeld Gymnastics Two-Time Olympian, Five-time Olympic Coach
Toby Towson Gymnastics Six-Time National Champion, International Performer and Choreographer
Dominick Minicucci Gymnastics Two-Time Olympic Gymnast, NCAA Champion, WHGF Board Member
McKenzie Foster Gymnastics WHGF Team Alumna featured in the book I am a Gymnast
Camille Duvall Water Skiing Five-time World Champion Water Skier

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Thank you all for your ongoing support of the Wendy Hilliard Gymnastics Foundation!

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We are reaching far and wide for support of our gymnastics programs that have already served over 17,000 youth with free and low cost gymnastics!

Every dollar goes to our gymnastics programs and scholarships – so donate here and please join us!

Find out more info about our Going for the Gold gala here.

 

Take a look at last year’s event

 

Click here to see ALL of our Perfect 10 Countdown posts.

Perfect 10 Countdown: Going for the Gold Gala 2018 – DAY 7 – Gala Honorees

It’s DAY 7 of the Going for the Gold Gala Perfect 10 Countdown!

“It takes a village” is my favorite quote to describe my foundation and especially our annual fundraiser. We have always had champions from the corporate, community, non-profit and other sports support and generously give to our event.

Simon M. Lorne, Chief Legal Officer and Vice Chairman of Millennium Management LLC will receive our 2018 Going for the Gold Corporate Award.

“Wendy Hilliard, through her Foundation, has used gymnastics as an entry point to provide discipline and incentives for goal-oriented behavior to a large number of children in generally underserved communities.  I am humbled to receive this honor from the Foundation, and will treasure it greatly.” Simon M. Lorne

We also want to recognize our past honorees and emcees for their wonderful support as well!

Honorees

2017
Billie Jean King
David O’Brien

2016
Daniel Doctoroff
Wendy Hilliard
Anne Williams Isom

2015
Abie Grossfeld
Christina Minardi
John B. Rhea

2014
Jay Kriegel
Gail Marquis and Audrey Smaltz
Rose Voisk

2013
Geoffrey Canada
Linda Dunham

2006
Bill Hladick and Joanne Sotres

Emcees:

Shannon LaNier 2013
Maurice DuBois 2014 & 2018
Sarah Hughes – 2015
Carol Jenkins 2016 & 2017

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Thank you Simon for your ongoing support of the Wendy Hilliard Gymnastics Foundation!

_____

We are reaching far and wide for support of our gymnastics programs that have already served over 17,000 youth with free and low cost gymnastics!

Every dollar goes to our gymnastics programs and scholarships – so donate here and please join us!

Find out more info about our Going for the Gold gala here.

 

Take a look at last year’s event

 

Click here to see ALL of our Perfect 10 Countdown posts.

Perfect 10 Countdown: Going for the Gold Gala 2018 – DAY 6 – Gabby Douglas

It’s DAY 6 of the Going for the Gold Gala Perfect 10 Countdown!

Honorary Chairs lend their name to support our fundraiser!

Thank you to our 2018 Going for the Gold Honorary Chairs:
Tennis Legend – Billie Jean King – 2017 WHGF Honoree
Good Morning America’s Robin Roberts
2016 Olympic Gymnastics Champion Simone Biles and
2012 Olympic Gymnastics Champion Gabby Douglas
Today we are featuring Gabby Douglas, who has always supported the WHGF in so many ways. She has been up to see the WHGF team perform and invited our girls to many events and TV shows.

 

Watch Gabby perform at the 2016 American Cup:

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Thank you Gabby for your ongoing support of the Wendy Hilliard Gymnastics Foundation!

_____

We are reaching far and wide for support of our gymnastics programs that have already served over 17,000 youth with free and low cost gymnastics!

Every dollar goes to our gymnastics programs and scholarships – so donate here and please join us!

Find out more info about our Going for the Gold gala here.

 

Take a look at last year’s event

 

Click here to see ALL of our Perfect 10 Countdown posts.

Perfect 10 Countdown: Going for the Gold Gala 2018 – DAY 2 – Bart Conner

It’s DAY 2 of the Going for the Gold Gala Perfect 10 Countdown!

This year, one of our two Champions Award honorees is Olympic gymnast Bart Conner!

Bart is truly one of my favorite gymnasts! We always have such a great time and a few hearty laughs – whether it was performing in a show, commentating TV events together [he has good rhythmic jokes 🙂 ] or meeting up at the Olympics.
He has been a long time supporter of the WHGF and I am so honored that he is taking the time to come to NYC for our Going for the Gold Gala!
Bart Conner is a three-time Olympian (1976, 1980, 1984) and won two gold medals (team and parallel bars) at the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. He has been inducted into every sports hall of fame out there: USOC Olympic Hall of Fame, USA Gymnastics Hall of Fame, the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame, and the International Gymnastics Hall of Fame. Today, Bart runs the Bart Conner Gymnastics Academy with his wife Nadia Comaneci.

Watch Bart performing in 1976:

Thank you Bart for your ongoing support of the Wendy Hilliard Gymnastics Foundation!

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We are reaching far and wide for support of our gymnastics programs that have already served over 17,000 youth with free and low cost gymnastics!

Every dollar goes to our gymnastics programs and scholarships – so donate here and please join us!

Find out more info about our Going for the Gold gala here.

 

Take a look at last year’s event

 

Click here to see ALL of our Perfect 10 Countdown posts.

Black Gymnasts in History 2018: Winners of the U.S. Classic

Every year, the U.S. Classic precedes the National Championships, and during an Olympic year, it’s especially significant. Since the competition’s start in 1983, won by Dianne Durham, seven black gymnasts have won the title of U.S. Classic champion. Please take the time to watch these ladies in action!

Dianne Durham, 1983

Dominique Dawes, 1993

Tasha Schwikert, 2001

Annia Hatch, 2002

Olivia Courtney, 2009

Mattie Larson, 2010

Simone Biles, 2014 & 2015

We are proud to salute our Black Gymnasts who have won the U.S. Classic!

Wendy

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Black Gymnasts in History 2018: Gymnasts with Skills Named After Them

What a unique honor and feat when gymnasts get skills named after them! To do so, gymnasts must successfully complete a skill at a World Championships or an Olympic Games.

Four black U.S. gymnasts have skills named after them that are still included in the current FIG Code of Points. 

Betty Okino
– Uneven bars: clear underswing with 180 degree twist to back flip in stretched position
– Balance beam: triple turn on one leg

Jair Lynch
– High bar: Tkatchev with a half turn prior to the catch to a mixed el-grip and swing back up to handstand

Simone Biles
– Floor exercise: Double layout half out

Donnell Whittenburg
– Still rings: Triple back pike dismount

We are proud to salute these gymnasts who added something new to the sport while at the top of their game!

Wendy

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Black Gymnasts in History 2018: Multi-Year Olympians


It is such a feat to reach Olympian-status in the sport of gymnastics — it is truly the pinnacle of the sport. What’s remarkable is that three Black Gymnasts have not only earned that honor more than once (Dominique Dawes 3x in 1992, 1996 and 2000; Jair Lynch 2x in 1992 and 1996; and Gabby Douglas 2x in 2012 and 2016), they’ve also all won individual medals. Dominique won a bronze on the floor exercise in 1996; Jair won a silver on parallel bars in 1996; and Gabby won a gold in the all-around in 2012.

Please take the time to read these athletes’ individual profiles (click the links above) and enjoy some videos of their performances at multiple Olympics!

Jair Lynch at the 1992 Olympics

Dominique Dawes at the 1992 Olympics

Jair Lynch at the 1996 Olympics

Dominique Dawes at the 1996 Olympics

Dominique Dawes at the 2000 Olympics

Gabby Douglas at the 2012 Olympics

Gabby Douglas at the 2016 Olympics

Wendy

Visit our official website at http://www.whfny.org
Follow us on Twitter at @WendyHilliardFD
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Black Gymnasts in History 2018: Gabby Douglas

screen-shot-2017-02-25-at-5-13-27-pmGabby!!

There is something about great athletes when everyone knows them by their first name!

The top prize in Women’s Gymnastics is the All-Around Olympic Gold Medal. The Olympics is just its own event, and nothing matches the anticipation, pressure, intensity and drama.

I was fortunate to be able to attend this event at the 2012 Games thanks to my friend, Shane Geraghty, who gave me his ticket! He saw in my eyes that I just had to see this live. It was as dramatic and edge-of-the-seat thrilling as any sport event I have ever seen.

Adding to the Olympic Gold was her all-around silver medal at the 2015 World Championships and her performance at the 2016 Olympics, where she helped the “Final Five” win a team gold medal. Wow wow wow! It is so RARE for an Olympic Champion to come back to a World Championships and another Olympic Games like Gabby did.

The impact of her win along with her comeback resonates strongly. She opened the door wide open and has inspired so many to the possibility of greatness.

Today for Black Gymnasts in History we salute 2012 Olympic Champion Gabrielle “Gabby” Douglas.

Watch Gabby in action during her silver-medal-winning performance at the 2015 Worlds.

Wendy

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Black Gymnasts in History 2018: Dominique Dawes

dominique_dawes

Not enough can be said about Dominique Dawes. She inspired not only thousands of girls to take up and pursue excellence in gymnastics—including the 2012 Olympic Champion Gabby Douglas—but oh so many non-gymnasts by her achievements, longevity and yes, the awesome way that she performed her routines.

She is the only U.S. gymnast to medal in three Olympics—just the fact that she made three Olympic teams is amazing. So long at the top of the sport – this intensified her impact not just on African Americans but also on all who admire the sport of gymnastics.

Dominique continues to inspire and has a long list of achievements outside of gymnastics. I was fortunate over the years to work alongside or closely with Dominique. We were both on Broadway at the same time and both worked in broadcasting and both served as President of the Women’s Sports Foundation.

I so appreciate that she has always supported my gymnastics foundation going back to the beginning—when she visited our free summer program in 1996 and in 2008, and spoke at my reception in NYC when I was inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Superstar is an understatement, incredible is close, but “Awesome” will always be associated with Dominique Dawes. We are proud to feature her today in our Black Gymnasts in History Project. And we want to wish a special congratulations to Dominique on the recent birth of two twins!

Read a full profile on Dominique by NRP here: http://www.npr.org/2011/12/14/143661139/dominique-dawes-from-olympian-to-health-advocate

Watch a video of Dominique’s 1996 Olympic medal-winning floor routine.

Wendy

Visit our official website at www.wendyhilliard.org
Follow us on Twitter at @WendyHilliardFD
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