Biography: ZMESKAL-Burdette, Kim 

ZMESKAL-Burdette, Kim 

Inducted: 2001 Born: Houston, Texas

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The AAU sent a full team for the first time to the 1958 World Championships in Moscow, USSR. At the time, a significant number of experienced American officials and judges didn’t think that an American team or individual would win a medal of any color in either the Olympic Games or the World Championships during their lifetime. A few were correct, but most are still with us, and their chests are puffed proudly with the “athletic big moment” gymnastic successes of both men and women, especially those of Kim Zmeskal-Burdette who has scored a total of eight perfect 10.0’s according to USA Gymnastics, our current National Governing Body. She has six Olympic and World Championship medals to her credit. A. Bruce Frederick, noted gymnastic historian, designated Kim an “American Gymnastics Centurion” defined as “ . . . one who commands our attention. Their accomplishments, performances, and records are unique and provide a standard for the field.” In addition to Kim winning the World Gymnastics Championship AA gold in 1991, she won gold on the BB and FX in 1992.

Olympic Games, Bronze-Team, Barcelona, Spain, (1992). World Gymnastics Championships: Gold-AA, first American, male or female, to win the World Championship AA, Silver-Team with a 10.0 Vault, Bronze-FX, Indianapolis, IN, (1991); Gold-BB & FX, Paris, France, (1992). Kim was the only competitor to win more than one gold medal in the Paris competition.  Additional International Competitions: Gold-AA, U.S. Junior National Championships, (1989); Gold-AA, City of Popes, Avignon, France, (1989); Silver-BB, Bronze-V, DTB Pokal, Stuttgart, Germany, (1989); Gold-AA (10.0 performance), Arthur Gander Memorial, Montreux, Switzerland, (1989); Mixed Pairs Gold-AA with Lance Ringnald, Swiss Cup, St. Gallen, Switzerland, (1989); Gold-AA, V, FX, UB [T], & BB [T], McDonald’s American Cup, Fairfax, Virginia, (1990); Gold-AA with Lance Ringwald, McDonald’s International Mixed Pairs, Villanova, Pennsylvania, (1990);  Gold-FX, Silver-AA & V, International Tournament of France, Paris, France, ((1990); Silver-Team, UB, & FX, Goodwill Games, Seattle, Washington, (1990); Gold-AA (10.0 performance), McDonald’s Challenge, USA vs. USSR, San Jose, California, (1990); Silver-BB, Joaquim Blume Tournament, Barcelona, Spain, (1990); Silver-AA, Arthur Gander Memorial, Montreux, Switzerland, (1990); Gold-AA, Silver-Team, Recontre Beaucaire, Beaucaire, France, (1990); Gold-FX (10.0 performance), Silver-AA, McDonald’s American Cup, Orlando, Florida, (1991); G-AA with Lance Ringwald, McDonald’s International Mixed Pairs, Atlanta, Georgia, (1991); Gold-AA, UB, &FX [T], Silver-V & BB, USA vs. Romania, Houston, Texas, (1991); Gold-AA, McDonald’s American Cup, Orlando, Florida, (1992); Gold-Team & BB; USA vs. China, China, (1999).  National Competitions: Gold-V, (Jr. Div.) American Classic, Phoenix, Arizona, (1988); Bronze-FX (Jr. Div.), McDonald’s U.S. Gymnastics Championships, Houston, Texas, (1988); Gold-AA, V, & BB, Bronze-FX (Jr. Div.), U.S. Classic, San Antonio, Texas, (1989); Gold-AA & FX, Silver- V & BB, U.S. Olympic Festival, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, (1989); Gold-AA, BB & FX, Silver- V & UB, American Classic, Dallas, Texas, (1989); Gold-AA (10.00 V & FX), U.S. Challenge, Las Vegas, Nevada, (1990); Gold-AA, Silver-UB [T], BB & FX, Denver, Colorado, (1990); Gold-AA & FX [T], Silver-BB, U.S. Gymnastics Championships, Cincinnati, Ohio, (1991); Gold-AA, World Championships Team Trials, Indianapolis, IN, (1991); Gold-AA, FX, & BB [T], Silver-V & UB (10.0 in the Vault Prelims), U.S. Gymnastics Championships, Columbus, Ohio, (1992); Silver-AA (10.00 for Kim’s vault), U.S. Olympic Trials, Baltimore, MD, (1992); Bronze-AA, & V, U.S. Classic, San Antonio, Texas, (1998).  Awards/Honors: Kim Kmeskal-Burdette began framing accomplishment certificates early by being an Inductee into the National Honor Society in high school. She was presented the “Up and Coming Award” by the Women’s Sports Federation; Named “Sports Woman of the Year” by the U.S. Olympic Committee (1991) and the March of Dimes’ “Athlete of the Year” (1991). Kim was also deemed “Athlete of the Year” by her national teammates, (1992) and has been a two-time Sullivan Award Nominee, an honor that is presented annually to the nation’s top amateur athlete. In addition, Kim was a nominee for USA Gymnastics’ “Longiness Perfect 10 Moments in Time.” Personal: Kim was a student of Hall of Fame coaches Bela and Martha Karolyi through the bulk of her competitive career.  She briefly retired in 1992, but she made successful comeback training with Mary Lee Tracy to make the U.S. National Team in 1998. She officially retired after an injury in 2000 and was immediately hired as a National Team Coach for Olympic preparation camps and as a production assistant for NBC Sports. Today, she and her husband operate a private gymnastics facility “EveryBody Fits” in Coppell, Texas. Website: . Family: m. Chris Burdette. They were married at Bela Karolyi’s ranch where they met. Children: One boy, Ryder.

Sources: Appreciation is extended to A. Bruce Frederick, author of Who’s Who in American Gymnastics, for Zmeskal’s results in International Open Meets (OG & WC), Jerry Wright, author of Gymnastics Who’s Who, 2005 for his results information and comments, Bruce Davis for his comments, information, and suggestions, and Abie Grossfeld for his insights, and USA Gymnastics for public domain information.

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