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Jackie Joyner-Kersee Biography

An Impoverished Beginning, First Pentathlon Win, Chronology, Competes In First Olympics, An Athlete Committed To Helping OthersSELECTED WRITINGS BY JOYNER-KERSEE:


American track and field athlete

Known as the greatest multi-event track and field athlete of all time, Jackie Joyner-Kersee is the winner of three Olympic gold medals, one silver medal, and two bronze medals, more than any other woman has ever won in the history of track and field. She competed in the 1984, 1988, 1992, and 1996 Olympics and is the first American woman to win over 7,000 points in the heptathlon. She set a new world record in the heptathlon in 1986, and was the first athlete in 64 years to win gold medal in both a multi-event and a single event in track and field. She is also the first American ever to win a gold medal in the long jump.


(With Sonja Steptoe) A New Kind of Grace: The Autobiography of the World's Greatest Female Athlete, Warner, 1997.

Jackie Joyner-Kersee

Sketch by Kelly Winters

Additional topics

Famous Sports StarsTrack and Field