Expert Commentator, Figure Skating
Dick Button has the rare distinction of having won both an Emmy Award and an Olympic gold medal. Mr. Button, who has served since 1962 as an ABC Sports expert commentator on figure skating on "ABC's Wide World of Sports" and ABC's coverage of the Winter Olympics, received the 1980-81 Emmy Award for Outstanding Sports Personality -- Analyst.
Mr. Button is widely considered one of the premier male figure skaters of all time. His career as a competitor was crowned with back-to-back Olympic championships in 1948 and 1952.
He was just out of grammar school in his hometown of Englewood, New Jersey, when he won his first title, the Middle Atlantic States Novice Championship. He went on to win a succession of championships, including the World Championship five consecutive years (1948-52), the U.S. National Senior title seven times and the North American title six times. His Olympic gold medals climaxed his amateur career. Button is the only skater ever to capture what could be considered a "grand slam" of figure skating, having taken the United States, North American, European, World and Olympic championships all in the same year -- 1948. He won the Sullivan Award as America's outstanding amateur athlete for 1949.
Mr. Button is a graduate of Harvard College. He toured in the Ice Capades and in the Soviet Union in Holiday on Ice. During this time he also attended Harvard Law School and after graduating, was admitted to the bar of Washington, D.C.
He has appeared in television specials, including "Omnibus" and "Hans Brinker and the Silver Skates," for Hallmark. His acting credits at City Center in New York City include "Mr. Roberts" and "South Pacific," and he has appeared in the movies "The Young Doctors" and "The Bad News Bears Go to Japan."
As founder and president of Candid Productions, Inc., Mr. Button has created a series of sports competitions (The Superstars, The Superteams, Battle of the Network Stars, the World Professional Figure Skating Championship and the World Challenge of Champions). He has also been an investor in and producer of Broadway theater. His last plays were "Sweet Sue," starring Mary Tyler Moore and Lynn Redgrave, and Tom Stoppard's "Artist Descending a Staircase."
He is the author of two books, "Dick Button on Skates" and "Instant Skating." He is also an authority on American furniture and decorative arts, and is a past president of the Richmondtown Restoration.
Mr. Button has two children, Edward and Emily.