World Champion Paralympic Runner and Actress Katy Sullivan Competes in Oklahoma’s Endeavor Games
Katy Sullivan is a gifted actress, a paralympic athlete and an inspirational story for everyone. You may recognize her as the feisty redhead on "My Name Is Earl" or maybe you have heard her sing the National Anthem ... but she is something special on those 'sexy, titanium Terminator legs' as she holds Paralympic World Records in the 100M and 200M Races. Look for her in competition at The Endeavor Games, Oklahoma City, in June 2011.
"My motto is and always will be: If you believe in what you are doing and you want to do it,
go for it, and don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do it.” - Katy Sullivan
HD Video and High Resolution Images at Katy Sullivan’s Online Press Room: www.CisionWire.com/Katy-Sullivan
(Hollywood, CA) - There are plenty of things you are not supposed to do when you have no legs. Katy Sullivan never got that memo! She is an accomplished actress, a top 5 internationally-ranked paralympic athlete, a powerful motivational speaker and a philanthropist. This weekend, Sullivan competes in the Endeavor Games (June 10-12, 2011) in Oklahoma City as a tune-up for the U.S. Paralympic Championships in Miami/Ft. Lauderdale (June 15-19, 2011). She will be running the 100M and 200M races with those 'sexy, titanium Terminator legs,' as her husband, comedian Jay Cramer calls her prosthetic limbs from Hanger Prosthetics.
"I was born without legs and have worn prosthetic legs all of my life. I was raised in Alabama and spent my early years trying to be just like my siblings, flipping around in gymnastics and practicing three times a week with the local swim team. Sports became frustrating because it was hard for me to keep up with the other kids so I turned all of my energy into becoming an actor," said Sullivan. "My performing career has taken me all over the country. I have worked on stage in Chicago, in movies in New York, on different television series in Los Angeles, and even had the opportunity to sing at the 1996 Olympic opening ceremonies in Atlanta."
When Sullivan moved to Los Angeles in 2004, it brought her not only tremendous opportunity with acting but it also brought Sullivan the opportunity to meet Will Yule at Hanger Prosthetics. Katy Sullivan was gifted a pair of running legs from Hanger, and a new chapter in her life was created.
"Through the generous support of Hanger Prosthetics and Ossur I received custom made running legs built especially for my body. In my new carbon fiber sprinting legs I began to compete at a higher level and started to excel in the competitive world of physically challenged track and field," shared Sullivan, a world record holder in her paralympic competitions.
Acting is the talent that Katy Sullivan pursued.
"When I was a child I saw a production of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory at a local theatre in Alabama. One of the girls in the play attended my school, and before the play was over I decided that I was going to be an actor. I spent the next ten years doing anything in the theatre from building sets to stage management – just to be involved in the process. I was cast in numerous plays and even in a singing group that performed at the opening ceremonies at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia," said Sullivan, disputing the myth of becoming an overnight success.
"I decided to get my degree in theatre and I went to a fantastic conservatory in the Midwest where I blossomed as an actress. My favorite time at school was when I was cast in the starring role in Hedda Gabbler.”
Upon graduation, Katy Sullivan was given a job at the prestigious Goodman Theatre in Chicago. She worked in theatres throughout Chicago before deciding to relocate to Los Angeles.
“Working in television, movies and independent films in Los Angeles keeps me very busy," continued Sullivan. "Recently, I appeared on the television series “My Name Is Earl” on NBC, and starred in an independent film, which is now on the film festival circuit."
When Katy Sullivan was young, her parents were very worried about her ability to support herself when she told them she was going to be an actor; however, she set my mind to it and became successful at what she love doing.
Since there are no other bilateral above knee women competing at this time, Katy Sullivan will have to compete against women who have one sound leg and one amputated leg above the knee. A video is here: http://www.youtube.com/chattymac
About the Endeavor Games
The University of Central Oklahoma is proud to present the 12th-annual UCO Endeavor Games for athletes with physical disabilities. The Endeavor Games is a nationally recognized competition that allows all athletes with physical disabilities to participate in a multi-sport event. The games also provide training clinics for aspiring athletes. The 12th-annual UCO Endeavor Games will feature 11 sport competitions for athletes of all ages and classifications to compete in. For more information on disabilities, sanctioning and classifications of individual sports offered at the Endeavor Games, please contact UCO Sports and Recreation. All activities are held in Edmond, Okla. at the University of Central Oklahoma, Edmond North High School, or the Lake Arcadia Outdoor Adventure Recreation Center.
The Endeavor Games is endorsed or sanctioned by U.S. Paralympics, National Disability Sports Alliance, Disabled Sports USA, United States Association of Blind Athletes, USA Track and Field, and Wheelchair Sports USA.