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KIEFER Lee

foil
Rank2
Pts240.000
Age27
HandR

Personal Information

Family Husband Gerek Meinhardt

Residence Lexington, KY, USA

Occupation Athlete, Student

Languages English

Higher education Science - University of Notre Dame: United States

License number 15061994000

Club

GoldSilverBronzeTotal
World Cup32813
Alger (ALGERIA), 2015-02-06St-Maur (FRANCE), 2014-11-07St-Maur (FRANCE), 2015-11-06
Tauberbischofsheim (GERMANY), 2017-04-28Katowice (POLAND), 2018-01-12Tauberbischofsheim (GERMANY), 2016-05-20
Cancun (MEXICO), 2017-10-13Gdansk (POLAND), 2017-02-03
Tauberbischofsheim (GERMANY), 2018-04-27
Katowice (POLAND), 2019-01-11
Le Caire (EGYPT), 2019-03-01
Saint-Maur (FRANCE), 2019-12-13
Katowice (POLAND), 2020-01-10
World Championship--11
Catania (ITALY), 2011-10-09
Zone Championships9--9
San José (COSTA RICA), 2010-08-02
Reno - Nevada (USA), 2011-07-04
Cancun (MEXICO), 2012-06-17
Cartagena (COLOMBIA), 2013-06-16
San José (COSTA RICA), 2014-06-03
Santiago (CHILE), 2015-04-17
Panama (PANAMA), 2016-06-23
Montreal (CANADA), 2017-06-15
La Havane (CUBA), 2018-06-17
Grand Prix2327
Turin (ITALY), 2016-12-02La Havane (CUBA), 2016-03-11Anaheim, California (USA), 2018-03-17
Long Beach, California (USA), 2017-03-17Shanghai (CHINA), 2016-06-03Shanghai (CHINA), 2019-05-17
Turin (ITALY), 2020-02-07
Olympic Games1--1
Tokyo (JAPAN), 2021-07-25

Sport Specific Information

When and where did you begin this sport? She began fencing at age five.

Why this sport? She and her brother and sister followed their father into the sport. "Growing up my dad decided that he wanted to take up fencing again. He hadn't picked up a foil in 10 or 15 years, and me and my siblings watched him compete at a local tournament. Then he asked if we wanted to try it, and we said yes. Twenty years later I'm still doing it."

Club / Team Bluegrass Fencers Club: Lexington, KY, USA

Name of coach Amgad Khazbak [club, personal], EGY; Buckie Leach [national], USA

Training Regime She made a fencing strip in her parents' basement during the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 so that she and her husband Gerek Meinhardt could continue to train. "We just tried to maintain a baseline, so we didn't forget how to lunge and our point control didn't get too terrible."

Handedness Right

General Interest

Memorable sporting achievement Winning gold in women's team foil at the 2018 World Championships in Wuxi, People's Republic of China. (usafencing.org, 09 Feb 2021)

Awards and honours In 2018 the University of Notre Dame established the Lee Kiefer/Gerek Meinhardt Award. The honour is presented to the fencer who gives their time selflessly and humbly in training. (teamusa.org, 11 Jan 2020, 28 Feb 2019)

During her collegiate career at the University of Notre Dame, she was named NCAA Atlantic Coast Conference [ACC] Women's Foilist of the Year in 2015 and 2017, First Team All-American four times, First Team All-Midwestern Fencing Conference twice, All-ACC Team twice, and received the 2017 Walter M. Langford Award for sportsmanship, leadership, and teamwork. (und.com, 01 Jan 2018)

Milestones She became the first fencer to win three straight individual Pan American Games titles, in any weapon, when she claimed gold in women's individual foil at the 2019 Games in Lima, Peru. She also won gold in the event in 2011 and 2015. (SportsDeskOnline, 09 Apr 2020; usafencing.org, 06 Aug 2019)

She became the first fencer to win nine individual Pan American championship titles, in any weapon, by claiming her ninth consecutive gold in women's individual foil at the 2018 edition of the tournament in Havana, Cuba. (usafencing.org, 18 Jun 2018; SportsDeskOnline, 09 Apr 2020)

In March 2017 she became the first female foil fencer representing the United States of America to be ranked number one in the world by the International Federation d'Escrime [FIE]. (nbcnews.com, 22 Mar 2017)

Famous relatives Her husband Gerek Meinhardt has represented the United States of America in fencing, and claimed bronze in men's team foil at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Her siblings Alexandra and Axel have also competed in the sport at international level. Her father Steve captained the fencing team at Duke University in the United States of America. (SportsDeskOnline, 09 Apr 2020; fencing.net, 14 Feb 2020; uknow.uky.edu, 22 May 2019; Facebook page, 25 Apr 2017; nbcolympics.com, 12 Jul 2016, 20 Apr 2012; und.com, 05 May 2015)

Ambitions To compete at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo. (uknow.uky.edu, 22 May 2019)

Other information TEAMMATES
She has known her US national teammates Nzingha Prescod and Nicole Ross since they were children. When the trio won women's team foil gold at the 2018 World Championships in Wuxi, People's Republic of China, it was the eighth senior world championships the three of them had competed at together. "[Starting out] we were still kind of young and just going through the motions a little bit. Along the way we all developed these crazy dreams to win the Olympics together. It would mean everything to make it to Tokyo [2020] with these girls just because we've been working so hard as individuals and as a team. We truly know each other's struggles and hopes and dreams." (teamusa.org, 30 Apr 2019)

FAMILY
Both her parents are doctors. Her mother Teresa emigrated from the Philippines to the United States of America as a child, while her father Steve captained the fencing team at Duke University. Her siblings Alexandra and Axel have both also represented the United States of America in fencing. "Fencing and medicine is all I have ever known since I was born. Before my sister went to college, we all went to every single practice together. It wasn't only a lot of bonding time but we all made each other better through constant practice. All of us are very competitive, which meant there was a lot of fighting when we were younger. But it was a lot of fun, and now we have that experience together as adults." (uknow.uky.edu, 22 May 2019; SportsDeskOnline, 13 Jul 2017; med.uky.edu, 01 Jun 2018; nbcnews.com, 12 Jul 2016; kyforward.com, 16 Jul 2012)

FURTHER EDUCATION
After completing a bachelor's degree in science at the University of Notre Dame, she began studying medicine in 2017 at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, KY, United States of America. She had considered retiring from international fencing after the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro to go to medical school, but earning the International Federation d'Escrime [FIE] world number one ranking in March 2017 inspired her to continue competing. "Obviously medical school is a huge commitment and I thought there was no way I could do both. But I had some conversations with my parents and the [University of Kentucky] administration and everyone supported me. They were like, 'You have to pursue this, you have a talent and we think you can do both, and we'll help you'." (uknow.uky.edu, 22 May 2019; LinkedIn profile, 01 Aug 2017)

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