2002 American Woman Award
Perhaps the most celebrated woman basketball player in America, Chamique Holdsclaw grew up in the Astoria housing project of Queens, New York. She and her younger brother were raised by their grandmother, who worked two jobs in order to send them to private school.
Ms. Holdsclaw won a scholarship to the University of Tennessee, where she led the Lady Vols to an historic three straight national titles. As a college junior, she won a spot as the only nonprofessional on the USA Basketball's World Championship team, which won the silver medal.
After receiving her B.A. in political science, Ms. Holdsclaw joined the U.S. Olympic team, winning the gold medal in the 1999 Australian games.
Ms. Holdsclaw was chosen first in the Women's National Basketball Association draft by the Washington Mystics. She has led the team to the Eastern Conference finals and was named most valuable player in the league.
Ms. Holdsclaw resides in Washington, DC, where she is an active volunteer at the Girls and Boys Clubs and other organizations that promote athletics and education for underprivileged girls.
Click here to see photos from the Awards Reception and Gala.