Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes

1 Michael Phelps

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Olympics
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest achievement: Set the record for winning the most medals, 28, of any Olympic athlete in history
  • Events: 100m butterfly, 200m butterfly, 200m individual medley
  • Olympic medals:
    • Five-time Olympian (2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016)
    • 28-time Olympic medalist (23 golds, 3 silvers, 2 bronzes)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Parents
  • Relationship: Married Nicole Johnson in 2016
  • Other occupation: Phelps retired from competing following the 2016 Summer Olympics
  • Fun fact: Phelps has several nicknames. He is sometimes known as “The Baltimore Bullet”. Fans at the Beijing Olympics dubbed him “Half-man Half-fish” and the “Deep Sea Frog”.
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2 Jenny Thompson

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Eurosports
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest achievement: Won more Olympic medals than any other female swimmer in Olympic history
  • Events: 4x100m freestyle, 4×200 freestyle, 4x100m medley, individual 100m freestyle, 4x400m freestyle, and 4x100m medley
  • Olympic medals:
    • Four-time Olympian
    • 12-time Olympic medalist, including eight gold medals, in 1992, 1996, 2000, and 2004 Summer Olympics
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
SwimSwam
  • Relationship: Married Dan Cumpelik in 2010
  • Other occupation: Anaesthesiologist and surgeon, who currently works at the Maine Medical Center in Portland
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3 Natalie Coughlin

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Olympics
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  • Event: Swimming
  • Biggest achievement: The top female swimmer at the 2004 Olympic Games 
  • Events: 4×100-meter freestyle, 4×100-meter medley, 4×200-meter freestyle, 100-meter freestyle, 100-meter backstroke, 200-meter individual medley
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (2004, 2008, 2012)
    • 12-time Olympic medalist (3 golds, 4 silvers, 5 bronzes)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Wine Enthuiast Magazine
  • Relationship: Married Ethan Hall on April 25, 2009
  • Other occupations:
    • Served as an Olympic analyst for MSNBC during the 2006 Olympic Winter Games
    • Appeared on “Dancing with the Stars” in 2009
    • Author of Cook to Thrive: Recipes to Fuel Body and Soul: A Cookbook
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4 Ryan Lochte

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Vox
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest achievement: The second-most decorated swimmer in Olympic history
  • Events: 200m individual medley, 4x200m freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Four-time Olympian (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016)
    • 12-time Olympic medalist (6 golds, 3 silvers, 3 bronzes)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Sports Illustrated
  • Relationship: Married Kayla Lochte in 2018
  • Did you know? Lochte was suspended for 10 months after being accused of giving a false statement to the police about a gas station robbery during the 2016 Rio Olympics. He was cleared of all charges in 2018.
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5 Dara Torres

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
IMDb
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: The first swimmer to represent the United States in five Olympic Games
  • Events: 50m, 100m FR, 4x100m FR, 100m FL, 4x100m IM
  • Olympic medals:
    • Five-time Olympian with 12 medals
    • 1984 (gold), 1988 (silver, bronze), 1992 (gold), 2000 (2 golds, 3 bronzes), 2008 (3 silvers)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
AP News
  • Current occupation: Launched a Wellness Campaign with CaniBrands CBD Company in 2019
  • Did you know? At the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, Torres became the oldest swimmer to earn a place on the U.S. Olympic team at the age of 41.
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6 Allyson Felix

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Bleacher Report
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  • Sport: Track and Field 
  • Biggest accomplishment: The only female track and field athlete to ever win seven Olympic gold medals
  • Events: 400-meter, 4×400-meter
  • Olympic medals:
    • Five-time Olympian (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016, 2020)
    • Ten-time Olympic medalist (7 golds, 3 silvers, 1 bronze)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
The Shadow League
  • Relationship: Married to fellow sprinter and hurdler Kenneth Ferguson
  • Current occupation:
    • Launched a clothing, shoes, and lifestyle brand, Saysh, which includes a fitness membership program, workout videos, and networking opportunities
    • Collaborated with Athleta on a fitness clothing line
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7 Dana Vollmer

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Bleacher Report
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: Set a world record in the 100-meter butterfly at the 2012 London Olympics
  • Events: 100m butterfly, 4x100m freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (2004, 2012, 2016)
    • Seven-time Olympic medalist (5 golds, 1 silver, 1 bronze)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Zimbio
  • Relationship: Married Andy Grant in 2011
  • Current occupation: Motivational speaker for corporate companies
  • Fun fact: Vollmer was the only mom on the United States swim team in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio
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8 Nathan Adrian

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Agenicia Olimpica
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  • Event: Swimming
  • Events: 50m freestyle, 100m freestyle, 4x100m freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (2008, 2012, 2016)
    • Eight-time Olympic medalist (5 golds, 1 silver, 2 bronze)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
People
  • Relationship: Married Hallie Ivester in 2018
  • Health crisis: Adrian shared a cancer diagnosis on his website, saying, “After a few tests and visits with a specialist, I, unfortunately, learned that I have Testicular Cancer. On the bright side, we caught it early, I have already started treatment and the prognosis is good. I will be back in the water in a few short weeks with my sights fully set on Tokyo!”
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9 Aaron Peirsol

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Swim Swam
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: Considered the greatest backstroker of all time
  • Events: 100m/200m BK, 100m, FL, 10k Open Water
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (2000, 2004, 2008)
    • Seven-time Olympic medalist (2 silvers, 5 golds)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Athlete Speakers
  • Environmental work: Spokesperson for the international ocean conservatory group Oceana. Ambassador for the Surfrider Foundation and the Global Water Foundation
  • Fun fact: Peirsol has won a total of 36 medals in major swimming competitions. He retired from swimming at the age of 27. 
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10 Katie Ledecky

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
CNBC
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: At just 15 years old, Ledecky was the youngest athlete on the US Olympic delegation at the 2012 London Olympic Games. 
  • Events: 200-meter freestyle, 400 freestyle, 800 freestyle, 1500 freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (2012, 2016, 2020)
    • Ten-time Olympic medalist (7 golds, 3 silver)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Team USA
  • Fun fact: Ledecky was the most decorated female athlete at the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympic games with 1 silver medal and 4 gold medals.
  • Charity work: Active with Catholic Charities, Bikes for the World, and Wounded Warriors
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11 Missy Franklin

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
CBS News
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: Was the most decorated female of all the 2012 Summer London games, earning a total of 5 medals
  • Events: 200m backstroke, 200m freestyle, 4x200m freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Two-time Olympian (2012, 2016)
    • Six-time Olympic medalist (5 golds, 1 bronze)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
ESPN
  • Relationship: Married fellow swimmer Hayes Johnson in 2019
  • Partnerships: Has long-term brand deals with Dasani, Bridgestone, Laureus, Speedo, and USA Swimming Foundation
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12 Amy Van Dyken

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Indie Star
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: First American female to win 4 gold medals in a single Olympics at the Atlanta 1996 Olympic Games
  • Events: 50-meter freestyle, 100 butterfly, 4×100 freestyle, and the 4×100 medley
  • Olympic medals:
    • Two-time Olympian
    • Six-time Olympic medalist (6 golds)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
USA Today
  • Relationship: Married former NFL punter Tom Rouen in 2010
  • Injury: Suffered a spine injury when she was thrown from an ATV in 2014 and is paralyzed from the waist down. Yet, doesn’t let her injury stop her from being active. “I do more now than I did when I was able-bodied,” Van Dyken told Summit Daily. “Because, if I failed before, people would be like, ‘Oh, I thought you were an athlete.’ Where, now, they say, ‘good for you for trying, honey!’”
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13 Jason Lezak

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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: At the age of 32, he was the oldest male on the U.S. swim team at the 2008 Beijing Summer Olympics.
  • Events: 4x100m medley, 4x100m freestyle, 100m freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian
    • Seven-time Olympic medalist (4 golds, 1 silver, 2 bronzes)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
NBC Sports
  • Relationship: Married Danielle DeAlva Lezak in 2004
  • Fun fact: Lezak is dubbed “The Miracle Man” after competing in what has been called the greatest swimming relay leg of all time at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Team USA’s men’s 4×100-meter relay squad beat their French rivals in a huge comeback, helping Micheal Phelps earn one of his 8 medals in the games. 
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14 Allison Schmitt

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
ESPN
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  • Sport: Swimming
  • Biggest accomplishment: The seventh U.S. Swimmer to make 4 Olympic teams
  • Events: 4×200 freestyle, 4×100 freestyle, 200 freestyle, 4×100 medley, 400 freestyle, 200 freestyle
  • Olympic medals:
    • Four-time Olympian (2008, 2012, 2016, 2020)
    • Ten-time Olympic medalist (4 golds, 3 silvers, 3 bronzes)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Zimbio
  • Occupational pursuits: After suffering depression after coming down from winning 3 gold medals in the 2012 London Olympics, Schmitt became an advocate for mental awareness and is pursuing a social work degree to help other athletes with the transition.
  • What she said: “Coming back down from that and not being surrounded by those teammates and athletes from other countries that have the same goals as you, the same drive as you, and being thrown back into the real world—it’s a huge adjustment, whether you win or lose,” Schmitt told Forbes.
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15 Venus Williams

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  • Sport: Tennis
  • Biggest accomplishment: The first tennis player to win a medal at four Olympic games
  • Events: Mixed (doubles); T-17th (doubles), T-33rd (singles); T-9th (singles); T-5th (singles); singles, doubles
  • Olympic medals:
    • Five-time Olympian (2000, 2004, 2008, 2012, 2016)
    • Five-time Olympic medalist (4 golds, 1 silver)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Modern Luxury
  • Other occupations:
    • Designs her own tennis apparel from her clothing line, EleVen
    • Founded an interior design company, V Starr Interiors
    • Designs the Venus Williams Collection, leather apparel for Wilson’s leather
  • Fun fact: Williams is part owner of NFL’s Miami Dolphins
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16 Simone Biles

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
TIME
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  • Sport: Gymnastics
  • Biggest accomplishment: First female gymnast to win 4 gold medals at a single game at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro
  • Events: Team, all-around, balance beam, floor exercise, vault
  • Olympic medals:
    • Two-time Olympian (2016, 2020)
    • Seven-time Olympic medalist (4 golds, 1 silvers, 2 bronzes)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
TODAY
  • Relationship: Dating football’s Houston Texans safety, Jonathan Owens
  • Fun fact: Biles competed on Season 24 of the television competition Dancing with the Stars
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17 Sue Bird

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Famous People
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  • Sport: Basketball
  • Biggest accomplishment: One of only 11 basketball players to earn a FIBA World Cup gold medal, NCAA title, WNBA title, and an Olympic gold medal
  • Olympic medals:
    • Five-time Olympian (2004, 2008, 2012, 2016, 2020)
    • Five-time Olympic medalist (5 golds)>
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Pinterest
  • Relationship: Engaged with American professional soccer player Megan Rapinoe
  • Other occupation: Investor in three Boston restaurants: Five Horses Tavern, Five Horses South and Worden Hall
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18 Greg Louganis

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Oregon Live
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  • Sport: Diving
  • Biggest accomplishment: The first male in Olympic history to sweep the diving events in consecutive Olympic Games
  • Events: Three-meter and 10-meter diving events, springboard and platform
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (1970, 1984, and 1988)
    • 5 Olympic medals, (4 golds, 1 silver)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Capital Gazette
  • Relationship: Divorcing husband of 8 years, Johnny Chaillot
  • Activism: LGBTQ+ activist who works with the Human Rights Campaign in defense of the civil liberties of the LGBTQ+ community and HIV positive people
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19 Lisa Leslie

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Pinterest
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  • Sport: Basketball
  • Biggest accomplishment: Owns the Olympic record for most points in a game with 35 points
  • Olympic medals:
    • Four-time Olympian (1996, 2000, 2004 & 2008)
    • Four-time Olympic medalist (4 golds)
Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
wikiFEET
  • Relationship: Married in 2005 to Michael Lockwood, basketball player for the Air Force Academy
  • Other occupation:
    • Head coach for the BIG3 professional basketball league team Triplets
    • Orlando Magic broadcast’s studio analyst on Fox Sports Florida
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20 Serena Williams

Olympic Records: Here Are The Most American Medal-Winning Athletes
Bleacher Report
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  • Sport: Tennis
  • Biggest accomplishment: Won four Olympic gold medals, one in women’s singles and three in women’s doubles—an all-time record shared with her sister, Venus
  • Events: T-9th (singles); T-17th (doubles); singles, doubles
  • Olympic medals:
    • Three-time Olympian (2000, 2008, 2012)
    • Four-time Olympic medalist (4 golds)
  • Relationship: Married Alexis Ohanian in 2017
  • Philanthropy work: Co-founder of the Serena Williams Secondary School in Kenya

Leigh Hewett

Freelance writer and pop culture junkie, Leigh Hewett loves to keep her finger on the pulse of celebrity news. Her work has been featured on TheTalko, Babygaga, and TheRichest. Her hobbies include keeping up with the Kardashians, eating french fries, and driving her two sons to and from basketball practice, all while blasting 90s hip hop from her minivan.

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