On February 18, 2006, Shani Davis became the first black athlete to win an individual gold medal at the Winter Olympics.
Davis was from Chicago’s South side. He grew up going to the roller rink and started taking speed skating lessons as a young adult. He won five National Group Championships from 1995 to 2003. He also won the National American Championship in 1999.
Davis won The Olympic gold medal on February 18, 2006, when he competed with a final time of 1 minute and 8.89 seconds. He also earned a silver medal in the fifteen-hundred-meter speed skating race.
Davis would go on to compete at the Olympic games in Vancouver in 2010. There, he was the champion in the one-thousand-meter speed skating race and earned a silver medal in the fifteen-hundred-meter. He retired from the sport in 2019.