Amy Purdy

Paralympic Winter Games Medalist and Proponent for Disabled Athletes

Despite losing both her lower legs to bacterial meningitis when she was only 19, Amy Purdy became the top-ranked adaptive snowboarder in the U.S., a three-time World Cup Para-Snowboard winner, the 2014 Paralympic bronze medalist, and the author of New York Times best-seller “On My Own Two Feet.”

After her double amputation, Ms. Purdy was unable to find prosthetics that would allow her to snowboard, so she built her own and began snowboarding just seven months later. Three months after a kidney transplant at 20, she entered the USASA National Snowboarding Championship, where she won medals in three events. In 2018, she won silver and bronze medals at the Paralympic Games in Korea. She is the only double-leg amputee competing at the elite world-class level.

Ms. Purdy was the first double amputee contestant on Dancing with the Stars, where she finished second, and she and her then-boyfriend also raced around the world on The Amazing Race. She was featured in a national Super Bowl ad for Toyota in 2015, as well as countless magazines including the 2014 ESPN Body Issue and People magazine.

In 2005, Ms. Purdy co-founded Adaptive Action Sports, a nonprofit organization dedicated to introducing people with physical challenges to action sports, and that was instrumental in getting adaptive snowboarding added to the 2014 Paralympic Games.