Highlighting some of the men and women of Team USA and their groundbreaking achievements

Throughout February, the U.S. Olympic & Paralympic Digital Museum will share the inspiring stories of some of the African-American men and women of Team USA. We’ll look at Olympians and Paralympians who overcame adversity to rise above the competition and make their marks.

Explore their stories

The first American woman to compete in five Olympic Games, Willye White won silver in long jump at the Melbourne 1956 Olympic Games and the 4x100-meter relay at the Tokyo 1964 Olympic Games.
Wilma Rudolph overcame several childhood challenges -- including being told she would never walk again -- to win three track and field gold medals at the Rome 1960 Olympic Games.
One of the best boxers of all-time, Sugar Ray Leonard beat each of six opponents by 5-0 scores en route to winning the light welterweight gold medal at the Montreal 1976 Olympic Games.
Jackie Joyner-Kersee won six Olympic medals (three gold), started four years on the UCLA women's basketball team and was named the Greatest Female Athlete of the 20th Century by Sports Illustrated.
Michael Johnson was one of the world's best sprinters of his time, capturing four Olympic gold medals over three Olympic Games and maintaining his speed even as he aged.
Florence Griffith Joyner was one of the most flamboyant runners of all time. Known for her long hair, long fingernails and bright track suits, FloJo won three Olympic gold medals and two silvers.
Harrison "Bones" Dillard is the only man to win Olympic gold medals in the 100-meter dash and the 110-meter hurdles. In between the 1948 and 1952 Olympic Games, he served in the U.S. Army.
Diagnosed with Graves' disease, sprinter Gail Devers nearly needed her feet amputated. But she recovered to win three gold medals and competed in five Olympic Games.
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