Olympic short-track speed skater Apolo Ohno was on the medal podium eight times in his career. “But I was never on the podium alone. It was all of us, the 300 million strong of us in the U.S., the team.”
It’s the same for serving 92,000 each year at Peak Vista Community Health Centers, he said. “It takes all of us ... all of you ... the community.”
The 825 early risers at the Peak Vista Breakfast of Champions at The Broadmoor on Nov. 6 were there to hear about Ohno’s athletic experiences and to respond with $275,000 for the nonprofit’s medical, dental and behavioral health care.
This was the 14th anniversary Breakfast of Champions benefit for Peak Vista, founded in 1971 and now covering the Pikes Peak and East Central regions. A favorite health quote of the day was from Scottish philosopher Thomas Carlyle: “He who has health, has hope; and he who has hope, has everything.”
A change announced is the rebranding of the Homeless Health Center to the Health Center at Rio Grande, said President/CEO Pam McManus.
For keynote speaker Ohno, this was “coming back home to the 719” where he trained during his speedskating years. He biked from the Olympic Training Center to run the Manitou Incline multiple times a day, sometimes hopping the Incline — the rickety original version — on one leg to build skating strength.
Today he’s a polished motivational speaker and businessman, a network sports analyst, an author and winner of the “Dancing with the Stars” mirror ball championship with “that bombshell Julianne Hough.”
At a Penrose House reception the night before the breakfast, he patiently posed for photos with sponsors and donors and did the same for a huge line of people waiting after the breakfast.
And, ladies, here’s the answer to your question. Yes, there’s a woman in his life. Bianca Stam is 27; he’s 35. She owns a Chicago restaurant, is an actress and model, speaks five languages, and they travel the world. They live in Los Angeles and have a dog, Sesame Mochi Ohno.
Breakfast of Champions sponsors were El Pomar Foundation, Key Bank, Covington Homes and GE Johnson Construction Co.
Here’s Gazette sports columnist David Ramsey’s interview about Ohno’s Olympic moments: tinyurl.com/y9pqefgz