North Texas Olympic Gold Medalist Michelle Carter To Be Inducted in Texas Sports HOF

During Black History Month, NBC 5 is taking a closer look at the men and women who broke barriers and shaped the future for North Texas.

Michelle Carter has Olympic adrenaline running through her veins.

Her father, Michael Carter, won a silver medal at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics in shot put.

“It's surreal," Michelle said. "When I sit back and think about it and get awards, I think 'wow.' I guess you live your life trying to do your best and do what you're good at. When things happen its just awesome, because I am just trying to do my best.”

Michelle is considered the most successful American woman in shot put history.

The three-time Olympian won a gold medal in the shot put at the Rio de Janeiro Olympics in 2016 and became the first American woman to win the gold in that event. Her throw set an American record.

Michelle really started to shine in 1997 at Red Oak High School when she won eight shot put state championships. After her successful prep career, she was awarded a full scholarship to The University of Texas, where she was a seven-time All American.

She is making her mark off the field as well. Her nonprofit called You Throw Girl Sports Confidence Camp created in 2017. It’s open to female athletes in all sports in grades 6th through 12th.

“Now that I am towards the later half of my career in sports, I see the impact of what I have done in the sport today and it just kind of blows my mind on how that happened," Michelle said. "When I first started, you didn’t see that many black girls out there throwing the shot put. Or making the Olympic team. But now there are so many black girls who are in the sport and doing well in the sport. A lot of them telling me they grew up watching me."

Michelle said this year's camp will be a winter camp during Christmas break, due to the Toyko 2020 Olympics in July and August.

Carter is eyeing her fourth Olympics, but still has to earn her spot on Team USA. The Olympic Trials are set for June in Oregon. If all goes well, Michelle Carter will march in the Opening Ceremony in Tokyo on July 24, 2020. She says training for Tokyo has been a lot different from that of the first three Olympics she has competed in.

Even after her professional career is over, she hopes to leave a lasting impression.

"Athletics only last for so long. I want to help these girls as they mature into grown women," Michelle said.

“I am very experienced, but I can feel the difference. I have to work smarter not harder. For me, recovery is really important at this point. Making sure that I am doing everything that I can do to make sure that my body recovers," Michelle said.

When she is inducted into the Texas Sports Hall of Fame in March, she and her father will become the first, father-daughter duo to receive the honor. He was inducted in 2002.

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