If you need any further indication that Chloe Kim is our new hero, she was able to tweet about breakfast sandwiches, then go on to win a gold medal in snowboarding for Team USA. This Olympics has, in a lot of ways, been the Year of the Teen, with Kim, just 17 years old, winning gold and fellow snowboarder (and cool teen) Red Gerard oversleeping due to a late-night Netflix binge before winning a gold medal.
Chloe Kim is the sort of seemingly well-adjusted, happy, driven Olympic hero we need — someone who can be honest and relatable (see: hangry tweet) and express her nervousness to the world via another tweet. How cool would it have been for young women during, say, the Summer ‘96 Olympics to read the tweets of the Magnificent Seven?
As one article explored, Kim is the potential new face of the Olympic movement, an event with a dark shadow cast over it in the face of a generation of American female athletes having been abused by U.S. Olympic and USA Gymnastics team physician Larry Nassar.
As professor Derick Hulme of Alma College told the OC Register, “The Olympic Games themselves face a profound demographic challenge – attracting younger viewers is essential for the Games continuing to retain the mantle of THE premier international sporting event. Particularly in the aftermath of the Larry Nassar and Russian doping challenges, and with the uncertainty about geopolitical tensions hovering over the event, a young, extraordinarily talented athlete with a compelling personal narrative is exactly what the IOC and the Olympic movement needs.”
Kim’s authenticity radiates from her, and the world is noticing. She’s been seen everywhere from Teen Vogue to Forbes “30 Under 30” and has signed deals with Visa, Target and Monster. After all of this, I hope Kim still has time to grab a churro.