Simone Biles is the epitome of Black girl magic. After winning her 25th overall medal during the 2019 World Gymnastics Championships in Germany last month Biles—who is the most decorated gymnast in the world—has been selected as the 2019 Team USA Olympic Female Athlete of the Year, Today reported.
The Columbus, Ohio native received the honor at the Team USA Awards ceremony which was hosted in Los Angeles on Tuesday. The Olympian has had nothing short of an epic year. She’s hit many historic milestones while competing. The athlete took home five gold medals during the 2019 FIG World Championships; setting a record for taking home more gold medals than any other gymnast at the competition in 61 years. While competing in Germany, she displayed a triple-double on the floor and a double-double dismount on the beam; two moves that had never been performed by a female gymnast in a competition before. She also won her sixth U.S. all-around title, making her the first woman in 67 years to do so.
The 22-year-old says she wants to use her platform in sports to inspire and empower women and girls to be unapologetic about their greatness. “It’s important to teach our female youth that it’s OK to say, ‘Yes, I am good at this,’ and you don’t hold back,” she said in an interview with USA Today. “You only see the men doing it. And they’re praised for it and the women are looked down upon for it. But I feel like it’s good to do because once you realize you’re confident and good at it, then you’re even better at what you do.”
Other athletes who received awards included figure skater Nathan Chen, Paralympic rower and cross-country skier Oksana Masters and archer Ben Thompson. The U.S. Women’s World Cup Team and the U.S. National Sled Hockey Team were honored as well.