Special Olympics Florida

Special Olympics USA Team Named

313 Athletes, Coaches and Staff to Represent USA at Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019

Special Olympics USA is proud to announce that it will send a 313-member delegation to represent the United States at the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019, being held March 14-21, 2019, in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

Special Olympics USA, is comprised of 216 athletes, 63 coaches and approximately 34 delegation members who support team operations. Team members will compete in 18 of the 24 sports offered: athletics, basketball, bocce, bowling, cycling, equestrian, football (soccer), golf, gymnastics – artistic, gymnastics—rhythmic, open water swimming, powerlifting, sailing, swimming, table tennis, tennis, triathlon, and volleyball.


Twenty-two athletes, coaches, and Unified partners will represent Special Olympics Florida in 7 different sports:

Crystal Carter – Bocce
Sandra Carter – BocceCori Davis – Equestrian
Robert Moore – Equestrian
Renee Phifer –

Kenyatta Johnson – Golf

Annamarie Nieves – Gymnastics

Gina Grant – Open Water Swim
Lee Scharf – Open Water Swim

  Ryan Smith – Tennis
Brittany Tagliareni – TennisTea Campbell – Volleyball
Christopher Castillo-Jordan – Volleyball
Marcus Collins – Volleyball
Storm Curtis – Volleyball
Kyle Drake – Volleyball
Andrew Edwards – Volleyball
Yzekiel Maldonado – Volleyball
Katia Rios – Volleyball
Yatziri Rodriguez – Volleyball
Joseph Wigand – Volleyball Coach
Casey Wigand – Volleyball Coach

The delegation also includes Special Olympics Unified Sports® teams, where people with and without intellectual disabilities compete together, as teammates. These will be the most inclusive Games to date. Special Olympics USA will have representation in the following Unified Sports: basketball, bocce, golf, sailing, soccer, table tennis, tennis, and volleyball.   

To learn more about the delegation, please visit www.specialolympicsusa.org for a full team listing, photos and bios.

Special Olympics USA is the national team that represents the United States at the Special Olympics World Summer and Winter Games. Team members compete in an array of the 32 official Special Olympics summer and winter sports, in individual and team formats. 

Every two years, the world transcends the boundaries of geography, nationality, political philosophy, gender, age, culture and religion to come together for the Special Olympics World Games. Alternating between summer and winter Games, this event is the flagship event of the Special Olympics movement, which promotes inclusion, equality, and acceptance around the world.

“This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for these athletes to demonstrate their athletic abilities, competing at the highest level on the world stage, and to have life and cultural experiences that will stay with them for the rest of their lives,” said Chris Hahn, Head of Delegation for Special Olympics USA. “I encourage every American to cheer on these inspiring athletes, to share in their triumphs and to take pride in knowing that they will represent our country with excellence and honor.”

This is expected to be the largest Special Olympics World Games in history. An estimated 7,500 athletes from 176 nations will compete in 24 Olympic-type sports at the Special Olympics World Games Abu Dhabi 2019: athletics, badminton, basketball, beach volleyball, bocce, bowling, cycling, equestrian, football, golf, gymnastics – artistic, gymnastics—rhythmic, handball, judo, kayaking, open water swimming, powerlifting, roller skating, sailing, swimming, table tennis, tennis, triathlon, and volleyball.

ESPN’s global television networks and digital media will bring extensive coverage to sports fans and supporters of the Special Olympics movement around the world. As the official broadcast partner of Special Olympics, ESPN’s television coverage will be carried across its networks in the U.S. as well as streamed through WatchESPN and the ESPN App.

Bank of America is the Premier Sponsor of Special Olympics USA. Champion is the Official Supplier and Supporter of Special Olympics USA.  MTM is Recognition Partner of Special Olympics USA.

To follow Special Olympics USA, visit www.specialolympicsusa.org, and follow on Facebook: www.facebook.com/specialolympicsusa,Twitter: @specialolyUSA, and Instagram: @specialolympicsusa. Hash Tag: #Cheer4USA