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Dorothy  Hamill

Dorothy Hamill

Olympic Athlete

Dorothy Hamill

Olympic Athlete


Dorothy Hamill captured the Gold Medal at the 1976 Winter Games in Innsbruck, Austria at the age of 19. Overnight, she became one of those rare champions who transcended her sport and captured the country’s imagination. Still, she has said she is most proud of her World Championship title in Gothenburg, Sweden, which followed her Olympic win. At that time, everyone had advised her to retire from amateur competition, saying that even a second-place finish would tarnish the luster of her Olympic gold. Characteristically, once she set her mind to it, she would not be dissuaded, and won.

Hamill has been inducted into the Olympic Hall of Fame and the Figure Skating Hall of Fame. She was very proud to run the torch into the Olympic Stadium in Salt Lake City in 2002 and skate the closing ceremonies with vocalist Harry Connick Jr. For the last Winter Olympics, she co-hosted coverage with Billy Bush for Access Hollywood and is slated to be a correspondent for the upcoming Olympics in Soochi, Russia in February 2014.

For more than a decade, Hamill has suffered from osteoarthritis (OA), a chronic joint disease in her neck, hips and knees. While it takes her more time to warm up and get moving, Hamill has not let OA stop her from being active. 

As a professional, Hamill has skated with many productions, including the Ice Capades and Stars on Ice. Four ABC primetime television specials have been produced in her honor and she 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.” She won an Emmy Award for her lead role in “Romeo and Juliet.”

In March 2013, Dorothy joined season 16 of Dancing with the Stars where she received the highest marks and most press of any of the contestants in the first week. However, in the second week of rehearsals she severely injured her back and had to bow out of the competition. 

She has created fantasy ice skating clinics in Nantucket, Vail and Lake Tahoe, and does many motivational speaking engagements for women, medical and health organizations. Also, Hamill is involved with many charity organizations, including the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, the International Special Olympics, Big Brothers & Sisters of America, the American Cancer Society, Ronald McDonald House, March of Dimes, and a variety of AIDS foundations.

Hamill released her memoir A Skating Life: My Story, which made The New York Times Best Seller List in 2007.

Speech Topics

A Skating Life

With her distinctive bobbed hairdo and dazzling smile, Hamill leaped into America's heart as a 19-year old when she took the Olympic figure-skating gold medal in 1976. In this keynote presentation, based on her book A Skating Life, she reveals her lifelong struggle with a depression that sometimes left her contemplating suicide. She shares how she now successfully manages her depression with a compendium of exercise, medication, therapy, and the support of her family and friends.

An Evening with Dorothy Hamill

A Champion Wins Over Depression


Books & Media


A Skating Life