Michelle Kwan: American skating icon
1. Michelle Kwan was born July 7, 1980 in Torrance, Calif.
2. Her parents, Danny and Estella, are Chinese immigrants from Hong Kong.
3. She grew up speaking both Cantonese and English at home.
4. Kwan's interest in skating started at age 5, she wanted to follow in the footsteps of her ice hockey-loving older brother and figure skating older sister.
5. By age 8, she and her sister, Karen, began seriously training, getting up at 3 a.m. to skate for three or four hours before school.
6. Kwan left public school in 1994, when she was eighth grade, to be homeschooled.
7. The training paid off: With two Olympic medals and five world championships, Kwan is the most decorated figure skater in U.S. history.
8. Kwan gave up competitive skating in 2006 because of a hip injury.
9. In November 2006 Condoleezza Rice named Kwan the first U.S. Public Diplomacy Envoy. She traveled the world to speak with young people about leadership.
10. In May 2011, she received a master's degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University, majoring in international relations. She also has a bachelor's degree from University of Denver.
11. Kwan has guest starred as herself in The Simpsons and Family Guy.
12. Exercise is Kwan's guilty pleasure. "I have to have it. Maybe it's the athlete in me, but I'll give up sleep before I'll give up exercise."
13. Kwan's irrational fear is flying. "I hate it, but obviously I have to do it. I've made a lot of really good friends on planes -- grabbing onto their hands."
14. Kwan was recently revealed as No. 20 on espnW's list of the Top 40 female athletes of the Title IX era.
15. Kwan has been asked several times to appear on ABC's "Dancing with the Stars" and hasn't ruled it out. "I think it would be a lot of fun but I know it takes so much dedication and time," she said. "I just don't know if I can find the time right now, moving to Los Angeles for the show. I love all these new challenges I'm facing. I still need to see what I can do with this life."