Museum

ISHOF
 Gold Medallion Award



Presenting the 1991  ISHOF Gold Medallion Award Winner...
Donna deVarona
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In 1964, Donna deVarona won two gold medals at the Tokyo Olympics.  During her swimming career, she held 18 world records and 33 national records in all strokes and was named the most outstanding female athlete in the world by Associated Press and United Press International.  Featured as the cover girl for magazines such as Life, Time, The Saturday Evening Post and twice for Sports Illustrated, Donna is recognized as the Queen of Swimming of her era.

Her contribution to the sports world didn't end with her retirement as an athlete.  In fact, it was her swimming career and candid personality that opened the doors of success for her in the business world, and paved the way for her outstanding contributions to the sports.  Her career in broadcasting journalism is astounding.  At age 17, she became the first woman to cover sports on network television for "ABC's Wide World of Sports."  From there, she covered the 1968, 1972, 1976 and 1984 Olympic Games, for ABC Sports as well as co-anchoring the late-night wrap-up at the Los Angeles Olympics.  Donna joined ABC's Eyewitness News in New York and then NBC Sports and the Today Show.  She is currently Vice President of ABC Sports.

Donna's talents stretch to the field of sports administration, too.  In 1977, she became a special consultant to the U.S. Senate and major contributor to the passage of Title IX Legislation calling for equal sports opportunities for women.  As founding member and President of the Women's Sports foundation, Donna lobbied for equal rights for women athletes.  She has served on special commissions for Presidents Ford, Carter and Reagan, as well as various International Olympic committees and congresses.

Donna is married to John Pinto and has two children, John David and Joanna Katherine Elizabeth, named after Donna's sister Joanna Kearns of the successful television comedy, "Growing Pains".

Donna is honored not only for her achievements in sports, and business, but for the friendships she has maintained throughout the swimming and broadcasting community.


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