I am first and foremost an athlete: a member of the United States Bobsled and Skeleton team.
I’m a Southern California native, a graduate of Northern Arizona University, and a miracle, though you may not know it to look at me.
My twin brother and I were born eight weeks early after complications during my mother’s pregnancy. Needless to say, we had a lot of problems in our first couple months. Our combined weight was even less than one healthy baby, and at one point, I dropped below my birth weight of 3 pounds 2 ounces to 2 pounds 12 ounces.
Twelve days after birth, I underwent open-heart surgery for a congenital heart defect called Patent Ductus Arteriosus. Because of the possibility of further damage to my already weakened lungs, doctors had to perform the surgery through my back. I remained in the NICU for 7 1/2 weeks and was developmentally delayed for 18 months following.
Now at 25, I suffer no side effects from the surgery except for a rather cool-looking scar across my left shoulder blade (which the doctor once promised my parents would probably be invisible. Showed him!). I’m incredibly fortunate, and always thankful that the doctors and nurses did so much for me and my brother!
I graduated from Hemet High School in 2006, where I competed in track and field, soccer, and had an extremely brief stint with the cross-country team (which I sometimes prefer not to think about).
I went on to run track and field at Northern Arizona University, where I was a three-year letter winner as a sprinter and, my senior year, a javelin trower. I graduated in 2010 with a bachelor of science degree in Parks and Recreation Management emphasizing in Outdoor Leadership and also earned a minor in Criminal Justice.
I joined the skeleton team in the winter of 2010 after being invited to a combine following college. I competed mostly in local and regional races my first two seasons, though I also raced in three end-of-season North American Cup races between 2011 and 2012.
Following the Team Trials races in Octover 2012, I was named to the 2012-2013 North American Cup team and raced six events in Calgary, Whistler, and Lake Placid, and took home a bronze medal at the 2013 US Skeleton National Championships.
Prior to the 2013-2014 season, I became an ambassador for Athlete Ally.
I have many deep-rooted passions besides skeleton. A passionate soccer fan, I’ve been following the women’s game since 1999 and currently act as a contributor to the online magazine Pitchside Report, providing game recaps and off-the-field pieces for the National Women’s Soccer League. I also was raised in a household that surrounded itself in the performing arts, so I have a great interest in Broadway, classical music and anything related. I can also safely dub myself a cinephile.