Katie Ledecky (Bio)
Kathleen Genevieve "Katie" Ledecky. Two world records, four world championships, one Olympic gold. All before she passed her driver's license test. Born in Washington, D.C. in 1997, Kathleen Ledecky (Katie, for short) did not waste much time before beginning her already-legendary swimming career. She started swimming at age 6, following in her older brother Michael's footsteps.
Ledecky grew up in Bethesda, Maryland and attended Stone Ridge School of the Sacred Heart. She trained with Nation's Capital Swim Club, where she was first coached by Yuri Suguiyama, followed by Bruce Gemmel after Yuri's departure to Cal.
"I just like to swim…fast. I don't think about the distance."
In her international debut at the 2012 London Olympic Games as a 15-year-old, Ledecky unexpectedly won the gold medal in the women's 800-metre freestyle. Four years later, she left Rio de Janeiro as the most decorated female athlete of the 2016 Olympic Games with four gold medals, one silver medal, and two world records. In total, she has won 26 medals (24 golds and two silver) in major international competitions, spanning the Summer Olympics, World Championships, and Pan Pacific Championships. During her career, she has broken thirteen world records.
Ledecky's success has earned her Swimming World's World Swimmer of the Year in 2013, 2014, 2015, and 2016. Ledecky was also named Associated Press Female Athlete of the Year in 2017, international female Champion of Champions by L'Équipe in 2014 and 2017, United States Olympic Committee Female Athlete of the Year in 2013, 2016 and 2017, and Sportswoman of the Year by the Women's Sports Foundation in 2017.Ledecky's 10 individual gold medals at the World Aquatics Championships and 14 combined individual titles at the Olympics and World Aquatics Championships are records in women's swimming.