Best Local Girl Made Good - 2009
At age 24, St. Paul native Lindsey Vonn is the preeminent wunderkind of international women's alpine skiing. She recently broke the American women's record for World Cup race victories and clinched her second consecutive women's World Cup Championship earlier this year, becoming only the second American woman to pull off the feat. Her triumph came after battling back from a champagne-bottle-induced thumb injury sustained during a post-victory celebration. The poor thing. Vonn is quickly becoming the face of U.S. women's skiing, having snagged many top-flight endorsement deals, including Alka-Seltzer, which has featured the skier in a widely shown TV commercial. Vonn's timing for becoming the world's best women's downhill skier couldn't be any better: The Winter Olympics in Vancouver (and the international spotlight) will arrive next year.