Kathleen Genevieve Ledecky (born March 17, 1997) is an American competition swimmer, Olympic gold medalist, and nine-time world champion.
She is the current world record-holder in the 400-, 800-, and 1,500-meter freestyle (long course). She also holds the fastest-ever times in the 500-, 1000-, and 1,650-yard freestyle events.
In her international debut at the 2012 Summer Olympics as a 15-year-old, Ledecky unexpectedly won gold in the 800-meter freestyle in what was the second-fastest performance ever. In total, she has won fifteen medals in major international competitions, all of them gold, spanning the Summer Olympics, the World Championships, and the Pan Pacific Championships. During her career, she has broken eleven world records.
Ledecky’s success has earned her Swimming World’s World Swimmer of the Year and the American Swimmer of the Year awards in 2013, 2014 and 2015, as well as the FINA Swimmer of the Year Award in 2013. Ledecky was also named the international female Champion of Champions by L’Équipe in 2014.