In 1978, Wendy Hilliard became the first black woman to earn a spot on the US national rhythmic gymnastics team. Hilliard served as team captain for two years, and following her retirement in 1998 spent four years as team coach. From 1995 to 1997, Hilliard served as president of the Women’s Sports Foundation, the first black woman to hold the position.
With her last performance on the second day of the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials, Morgan White scores a 9.65 on the floor exercise and places fourth all around. After being named to the Olympic team, Morgan later broke her foot during training a few days after arriving in Sydney, and was replaced by alternate Tasha Schwikert. An injured gymnast has not been replaced by an alternate on an Olympic team for the U.S. women since. (x)
Congratulations to the U.S. Women’s Gymnastics Team on winning the gold medal today! The first in 16 years! ;)
The American team includes of Gabby Douglas of Virginia Beach, Virginia; McKayla Maroney of Long Beach, California; Aly Raisman of Needham, Massachusetts; Kyla Ross of Aliso Viejo, California; and Jordyn Wieber of DeWitt, Michigan.
With a mix of races and ethnicities—black, white, Latina, Jewish—this was easily the most diverse group of women to represent USA gymnastics at the Olympics. And while each woman was selected for her ability and potential to medal, that doesn’t change the fact that seeing the different faces on this year’s team is important and also pretty damn cool.
I’m so effing exciting to watch these ladies compete, and I’m even more excited for the little kids who get to have them as their role models.
Ya know, in a world of Taylor swifts and kardashians, it is so cool to see this beautiful and amazing and talented US women’s Olympic gymnastic team for everyone (not even just little kids looking for role models) but EVERYONE to look up to.
I also really enjoy the many times that is has been said “better than even a men’s team” about their performance tonight 😏