Three-time Olympic gold medalist visits Don Lugo

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Mrs. Rigo-Witt

Photo of Leah O’Brien-Amico(graduated 1992) with Mrs. Rigo-Witt(alumni, graduated 1996)

Archer Hasson, News Reporter

Leah O’Brien-Amico visited Don Lugo on Oct. 5 to encourage students to get good grades, to pursue what you love, and to succeed in life. O’Brien-Amico is a three-time national champion, two-time world champion, three-time Olympic gold medalist, she joined the national softball hall of fame in 2009, and she is a Don Lugo graduate. O’Brien-Amico graduated from Don Lugo in 1992 with a sport scholarship to the University of Arizona. While she was in college she was asked to represent team USA at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics, and agreed. She went on to win gold with her team and was asked again for the 2000 Sydney Olympics and another time for the 2004 Athens Olympics. By O’Brien-Amico’s second Olympics she was married to her husband, and by her third O’Brien-Amico had her first child.

O’Brien-Amico also has a podcast called The GOLD Standard where she shares how to employ her acronym G.O.L.D. which stands for, Goal Setting, Overcoming Obstacles, Leadership, Dedication/Drive. When discussing the leadership segment of her acronym she remarked on how the seniors on her college team acted towards their underclassmen. “When I got on my college softball team, we had two seniors who were mean to us and one who was hard on us, but we could tell she was the right kind of leader we wanted to follow. The two that sat and yelled at ordered everybody, and told everybody what we were supposed to be doing, nobody respected at all”. O’Brien-Amico later went on to explain how the senior that was hard on her and her team was really just trying to help them get as far as possible. “But the other senior, I was a pitcher at the time still, and she was my catcher, and she was hard. If I throw a ball in the dirt during practice, she would just chuck it back at me at my ankles. And I was like, ‘Whoa chill out a little bit’ and all of a sudden she realized that’s not how to make the best of my teammates.” 

Having those people and all the support in her life she was able to achieve her dreams and more. Today she is no longer playing professionally, and is coaching team Israel. O’Brien-Amico encourages everyone to pursue their dreams and to never give up, and as long as you follow the G.O.L.D standard, it will make you journey through your goals easier than without it.