Chris Waddell is an American Paralympic sit-skier and wheelchair track athlete. He was a promising able-bodied skier while attending Middlebury College in Vermont, before a skiing accident left him paralyzed from the waist down.
As a sit-skier, Waddell won medals in the 1992, 1994, 1998, and 2002 Winter Paralympics. As a wheelchair track racer, he represented the USA at the 1996, 2000 and 2004 Summer Paralympics. He won a silver medal in the 200m T53 event at the Sydney Paralympic Games. In 2004, he set a T53 world record time for this distance which still stands today.
In 2006, Waddell was inducted into the National Disabled Ski Hall of Fame by Disabled Sports USA. In 2010, he was inducted into the Paralympic Hall of Fame.
On Wednesday, September 30th 2009, Waddell became the first paraplegic to climb Mount Kilimanjaro. He was named the 2010 Shining Star of Perseverance Honoree by the WillReturn Council of Assurant Employee Benefits to honor and recognize individuals and groups who overcome disabilities to succeed in the workplace and society.
In 2015, Waddell released his first book, Things I Want to Remember Not to Forget, a book based on his Middlebury College Commencement Speech that landed him on NPR's list of The Best Graduation Speeches, Ever. He has written three children’s books, including Is It Lonely to Be a Four- Leaf Clover, which illustrates his motto “It's not what happens to you. It’s what you do with what happens to you.”
As the founder of One Revolution and Nametags, Waddell presents to students throughout the world, and mentors our speaker athletes. He continues to challenge himself and push the limits of what others believe can be accomplished.
All American Speakers is a speakers bureau and booking agency providing information on booking Chris Waddell for speaking engagements, personal appearances and corporate events. Contact an All American Speakers Bureau booking agent for more information on Chris Waddell speaking fees, availability, speech topics and cost to hire for your next event.
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