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July 12, 2014, 2:04 am

Douglas in Walters’ ‘fascinating’ lineup

Olympic gold medalist Gabrielle "Gabby" Douglas will be among those in the spotlight when "Barbara Walters Presents: The 10 Most Fascinating People of 2012" airs Dec. 12 at 9:30 p.m. on ABC.

After winning the team gold medal in women's gymnastics for the USA at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Douglas, a member of the decorated "Fierce Five," became the first African American, male or female, to win the gymnastics all-around championship, placing her name in the history books in the process.

Leading up to the Olympics, the tough and talented Jordyn Wieber of DeWitt, Mich. had been all but anointed as America's new gymnastics sweetheart when Douglas, who had been silently stalking the reigning world champion all season long, won the U.S. Olympic gymnastics trials and earned an automatic berth on the team.

"I definitely had this amazing feeling," Douglas said of her mindset during the heat of the prestigious "All-Around" competition, which determines the world's best overall female gymnast. "I just told myself, 'Believe. Don't fear, just believe.' I didn't really think about making mistakes. I just wanted to represent everyone, not just myself — Team USA, coaches, family. I wanted to show my best routines and just enjoy the moment."

"She is a very graceful gymnast and also she has the strength and determination," said Douglas' head coach, Liang Chow. "I am totally beside myself. I think it was a wonderful night, and for me as a coach, that was a wonderful dream come true - to have an Olympic champion."

Walters' list of newsmakers also includes "Fifty Shades of Gray" author E.L. James, actor Ben Affleck, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, British boy-band sensation One Direction and seven year-old reality star Alana Thompson, a.k.a. Honey Boo Boo, as well as Seth MacFarlane, 2013 Oscars host and creator of TV's "Family Guy."    

According to, Walters explained that in determining her Top Ten, she chose people who have been "very much in the news" and "no criminals." Her choice for "The Most Fascinating Person of 2012" will be revealed during the broadcast.


Contact Entertainment Reporter Kimberly C. Roberts at (215) 893-5753 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .