-sponsored athlete Sheila Taormina
received the United States
Sports Academy’s Jim Thorpe All-Around Award
recently at the El Pomar
Foundation’s Penrose House in Colorado Springs. Taormina is the winner
of the 2006 U.S. Open title in the modern pentathlon and, if she qualifies
for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, she would be the first American to
compete at the Olympics in three different sports.
A native of Livonia, Mich., she recorded another milestone in her amazing
athletic career when she won the U.S. Open Championship, finishing
ahead of the 2004 Olympic silver medalist Elena Rublevska of Latvia and
2006 World Cup rankings leader Viktoriya Tereshchuk of the Ukraine.
Taormina began competing in the pentathlon in June 2005, and one year
later, has solidified herself as the top female pentathlete in the United
States. She has demonstrated a career of outstanding athletic achievement
that includes a gold medal at the 1996 Olympic Games in swimming’s
The versatile athlete competed in the 2000 (sixth) and 2004 Olympic
Games (23rd) in the triathlon. She also won the 2004 World Triathlon
championship. Taormina won her first pentathlon competition at the highly
competitive 2005 Pan American Championships.
“Sheila Taormina is one of the most outstanding athletes in the world,”
says USSA President and CEO Dr. Thomas P. Rosandich, “and we are proud
to honor her and her sport with this award.” |— Jackie Micucci