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Yang Yang

About Yang Yang

Yang Yang, China’s “Queen on the Ice”, is a retired Olympic short-track speed skater. She is one of China’s most famous athletes who serves in a number of prominent international sporting roles. Yang Yang was the first Chinese athlete to win a Winter Olympic gold medal at the Salt Lake City Winter Games in 2002. She has won 59 world championships, more than any other Chinese athlete. In November 2019, she became the first Chinese person to be elected as Vice President of the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). She also served as Chairperson of the Athlete’s Commission of the Beijing 2022 Winter Games.

Yang Yang is passionate about the power of sport to transform lives. Among several charity initiatives she leads in China, she is the founder of the Champion Foundation which provides sports education for young people and continues the education and career transition of retired athletes. Since 2011, the foundation has helped over 5,000 athletes with career development training.

As an International Olympic Committee (IOC) member from 2010 to 2018, Yang Yang cheered for the first Refugee Olympic Team when she attended the 2016 Rio Summer Games.  She began supporting UNHCR in 2021 by creating and amplifying Chinese social media content highlighting the power and potential of sport to transform the lives of people forced to flee conflict and persecution. Yang Yang helped UNHCR to introduce Chinese audiences to the story of the Refugee Olympic Team and is using her public profile to raise awareness about forced displacement through the universal language of sport.