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Elizabeth Anne ("Betty") Okino (born June 4, 1975 in Uganda) is an American performer and Olympic medalist in artistic gymnastics. Born in Africa, Okino moved to the United States with her family and began gymnastics at the relatively late age of nine. By 1988, only four years later, she had progressed to the elite level, placing seventeenth at that year`s junior U.S. National Championships. In 1990 Okino moved to Houston to train with Marta and Béla Károlyi. She placed second in the all-around and won the balance beam title at the 1990 US Nationals; and represented the United States at several major international meets, including the Goodwill Games, where she won a silver medal with the American team and finished fourth in the all-around and uneven bars finals. Okino was part of the US team for the 1991 World Gymnastics Championships, winning a silver medal in team finals and a bronze on the balance beam. She also won the 1991 American Cup. Okino continued to succeed in 1992, winning a silver medal on the bars at the 92 Worlds. However, serious injuries to her spine forced her to miss both the 92 US Nationals and Olympic Trials. In spite of this, she was added to the US team for the 1992 Olympics based on her performance at a second, private trial for US Gymnastics Federation officials and coaches. The decision to include Okino proved to be a sound one; she helped the American team win their first Olympic team medal, a bronze, in a fully attended Games, qualified for the balance beam event final and placed twelfth in the all-around. The daughter of a Romanian mother and a Ugandan father, Okino is fluent in Romanian. This skill came in handy in the gym and international competitions, where she could tell her teammates what was being said about them by their coaches and rivals from other teams.
Known for her long lines and balletic style, Okino introduced an original move on beam; a triple pirouette. The element is called "The Okino" in the Code of Points and is rated at a high difficulty level. Okino also has an uneven bars dismount named for her in the Code, a clear hip underswing with a half twist to a layout salto. Following her retirement from gymnastics, Okino became involved in show business. She has performed with Seaworld and has appeared in many television shows and films, including Moesha, Æon Flux and Undressed.
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Elizabeth Anne Okino
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Elizabeth Anne ("Betty") Okino (born June 4, 1975 in Entebbe, Uganda) is an American actress, and former gymnast and Olympic medalist.
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