Kristi Yamaguchi

Professional Skater & Olympian
Founder, Kristi Yamaguchi's Always Dream

Photo of Kristi Yamaguchi.

Kristi Yamaguchi is a former figure skater and gold medalist at the 1992 Olympics and a two-time world champion. She was also a renowned pair’s skater, winning multiple titles. In December 2005, she was inducted into the U.S. Olympic Hall of Fame. Kristi turned professional after the 1991–92 competitive season and toured for many years with Stars on Ice. In 2008, she became the celebrity champion in the sixth season of Dancing with the Stars.

Kristi was born in Hayward, California. Her grandparents immigrated to the United States from Japan and were sent to an internment camp during World War II where her mother was born. Kristi and her siblings, Brett and Lori, grew up in Fremont where she was home-schooled to accommodate her training schedule.

In 1996, Kristi established Kristi Yamaguchi's Always Dream. The program's goal is to provide funding for after school programs, computers, back-to-school clothes for underprivileged children and summer camps for kids with disabilities. Currently, Always Dream is focused on early childhood literacy with a statement of "Empowering Children to reach their dreams through education and inspiration."

Kristi is the author of Always Dream, Pure Gold, and Figure Skating for Dummies. In 2011, she published an award-winning children's book, Dream Big, Little Pig, which was #2 on the New York Times bestseller list. Kristi made a fitness video with the California Raisins in 1993 called "Hip to be Fit." In early 2012, she created a woman's active wear line focused on function, comfort and style to empower women to look good and feel good.

In 2000, she married Bret Hedican, a professional hockey player she met at the 1992 Winter Olympics when he played for Team USA. They live in Alamo, California with their two daughters, Keara Kiyomi and Emma Yoshiko.