Gabrielle “Gabby” Douglas, on Aug. 2, became the first African American gymnast to win the all-around event at the Olympics. Only three other U.S. gymnasts have achieved this honor in an event that determines the world’s best performer. Douglas’ win came just two days following her strong performance on vault that helped her team win the first women’s Olympic Gold medal for gymnastics in 16 years. According to Olympic reports, no other American gymnast ever has collected an Olympic gold medal in both the team and individual competition. According to Nielsen ratings, NBC drew 36.8 million viewers — seven million more than the same night at the Beijing Olympics four years ago — the night of Douglas’ performance.
Above, she’s shown with her family — sister Arielle (left) and mother, Natalie Hawkins (right) — after being surprised on “The Today Show” in London with a promo box of Kellogg’s Corn Flakes Cereal, which will feature the winning athlete this fall.
See sports section for other African American medalists.