Q&A Exclusive: Sanya Richards-Ross (@SanyaRichiRoss)

You may recognize Sanya Richards-Ross from the Olympic podium as she brought home 2 gold medals for the US in 2012 or as the sprinter of more than 6 World Championship titles. We’re psyched about all she’s accomplished, but even more amazeballs than gold medals is what she’s doing off the track. We got to chat with Sanya about how she’s creating change in education, sports, and health for young people around the world.

You are a 4-time Olympic Gold Medalist for the USA and World Champion sprinter. How has your sport helped define you?

The sport has taught me so many life lessons. It's taught me humility, perseverance, courage, and faith. Sport has given me the courage to chase my dreams and it has opened so many doors for me including the opportunity to work with wonderful organizations such as the Health & Humanitarian Aid Foundation (HHAF).

What causes are you super passionate about?

When I have found an organization that has the same humanitarian goals that I have, I tend to hold it close to my heart. This is the case with Win With Integrity, Livestrong, Feeding America and HHAF. Each of these organizations works tirelessly to improve lives, especially those of children. I am thrilled to be honored next month by HHAF at their annual Preston Robert Tisch Awards. Their health and humanitarian work in Ghana is making a huge difference in the lives of impoverished communities and I am so happy that I am able to help HHAF fundraise and raise awareness.

What inspires you to help children and teens both academically and athletically? I was inspired to start my Fast Track program because I know how blessed I am to be doing what I love to do, and I was fortunate to get a great education and athletic opportunities. I truly believe that a good education is fundamental for success. If I can help one child that may not have had that opportunity otherwise, I couldn't be happier.

What advice can you offer to teens with a dream? Never forget the importance of hard work, perseverance, and integrity on and off the track or in whatever your aspirations may be. Don't forget to thank people along the way that have helped you and to give back to those less fortunate through organizations like HHAF.

Follow in Sanya’s footsteps and take action around education. GO