Brian Boitano Bio

Few athletes have enjoyed the artistic and popular success that figure skater Brian Boitano has achieved since winning the gold medal for the United States at the 1988 Winter Olympics Games in Calgary, Canada.

Brian’s skating is characterized by power, precision, consistency and emotion. He created and routinely performs his signature jump, the Tano Triple, so difficult it has rarely been completed by anyone else. In competitions and exhibitions, Brian continues to raise the level of skating to new heights. He was the first American male athlete to have his own network television special, Canvas of Ice, which aired worldwide and was seen nationally on the ABC Network. The critically acclaimed special won awards in the International Film and Television Festival of New York and the Chicago International Film Festival.

Brian was an Olympic alternate in 1980 and a member of the ’84, ’88 and ’94 U.S. Olympic teams. After turning professional in 1988, Brian won six world professional titles, placing first and scoring perfect 10s in each of 10 consecutive professional championships. As a professional, he won the first 20 out of the 24 competitions he entered, a record unmatched in the history of skating. He has taken a leadership role among professional skaters and his efforts have changed the face of professional skating, raising its standard beyond any level seen in the sport’s history.

Brian won a prime-time Emmy Award, television’s highest honor, for his starring role in the HBO movie Carmen on Ice. He and fellow Olympic gold medalist Katarina Witt toured North America in three successful ice shows: Skating, Skating II and Skating ’92, which were broadcast on network TV. In 1994, he starred in Nutcracker on Ice with Oksana Baiul and Viktor Petrenko. For 15 years he toured with Champions On Ice around the country, headlining 25 national tours. Brian has provided expert commentary on televised skating shows for ABC, NBC and Turner networks.

Brian’s book, Boitano’s Edge: Inside the Real World of Figure Skating (Simon & Schuster, November 1997), is currently in its third printing and is considered one of the finest skating books ever published.

In 1995, Brian founded White Canvas Productions to create figure skating shows for both live and television audiences. More than 20 White Canvas specials have aired on NBC, USA Networks and TNT. Brian’s production of the Brian Boitano Skating Spectacular aired on NBC in January 2010. 

Brian began his figure skating career in 1972 at the age of 8. After viewing a performance of “Ice Follies,” he traded his roller skates for ice skates and was enrolled in group lessons taught by Linda Leaver. She immediately realized his potential and suggested private lessons. Thus began a remarkable partnership that has lasted 30 years and continues to flourish with Linda also serving as Brian’s personal manager.

At 14, while still in high school, he became the U.S. Junior Men’s Champion. Brian gained world recognition when he was 19 as the first skater to complete all six different triple jumps in a World Championship. He placed fifth in the 1984 Olympic Winter Games in Sarajevo and won the first of four consecutive U.S. Men’s titles in 1985.

In total, Brian, a three-time Olympian, has won more than 50 titles, including 23 international gold medals, two World titles, two Pro/AM titles, 16 professional titles, four U.S. National titles, as well as the Olympic Gold Medal. Brian has been inducted into the World Figure Skating Hall of Fame, the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame and the National Italian-American Hall of Fame.

He is one of the founding members of the National Safe Kids Campaign Entertainment Alliance and is also a member of the Public Awareness Council of the American Cancer Society.

In 1998, Brian founded Youth Skate, a non-profit organization whose purpose is to introduce San Francisco’s inner-city youth to the sport of ice skating. Since its inaugural year, more than 6,000 children aged 5 to 15 have participated. Now in its twelfth season, the charity continues to grow with Brian as an active participant.

With a lifelong passion for food and cooking, Brian premiered a Food Network cooking series, What Would Brian Boitano Make?, in August 2009. In the series, Brian takes viewers on a reality cooking adventure as he creates amazing food for a new event in each episode focusing on innovative but accessible dishes.

Brian Boitano Photos

See All Photos

Brian Boitano

Skating champion Brian Boitano of Food Network's "What Would Brian Boitano Make?"

Brian Boitano

Skating champion Brian Boitano of Food Network's "What Would Brian Boitano Make?"

Brian Boitano

Skating champion Brian Boitano of Food Network's "What Would Brian Boitano Make?"

Keep Reading

Next Up

Ina Garten Bio

Get to know Ina Garten, host of Barefoot Contessa.

Nancy Manlove Bio

Nancy Manlove is a finalist competing on Food Network Star, Season 13.

Sandra Lee Bio

Sandra Lee has a passion for simple solutions that create dramatic results in all areas of home life.

Marc Murphy Bio

Ask Chef Marc Murphy where he grew up and he'll fire off a list of cosmopolitan destinations — Milan, Paris, Villefranche, Washington, D.C., Rome and Genoa — "and that's before I turned 12," he’ll explain. This dizzying list of hometowns served as an excellent education in French and Italian cuisine, though as a teenager this was not his first passion. When the reality hit that he didn't have the funds to become a professional racecar driver, Marc followed his brother to the Institute of Culinary Education. After graduation he apprenticed at restaurants in France and Italy before returning to New York, where he landed a job as a line cook at Terrance Brennan's Prix Fixe. He stayed there for almost two years, working his way through every station in the kitchen and forging a professional bond with Brennan’s Sous Chefs Joseph Fortunato and David Pasternak. Eager to return to Europe, Marc flew to Paris and landed a position at the one-star Le Miraville, where he stayed for one-and-a-half years. Afterward, he staged at the famed Louis XV in Monte Carlo, where Executive Chef Alain Ducasse was so impressed with Marc's skills that he personally made arrangements for him to work with Sylvain Portay at Le Cirque once he returned to the States. Marc still considers Portay to be his greatest teacher. "Sylvain was above all concerned with coaxing out the most-vibrant, interesting flavors any ingredient had to offer, yet he insisted on minimal manipulation," he recalls. Following Le Cirque, Fortunato tapped him to work as a sous chef at Layla, Drew Nieporent's Middle Eastern fantasy in Tribeca, where he met consultant Georges Masraff. When Masraff joined forces to open Cellar in the Sky at Windows on the World, he recruited Marc to serve as executive chef. After receiving critical acclaim, including a two-star review from The New York Times, Marc headed uptown to serve as executive chef of La Fourchette, where NYT critic Ruth Reichl awarded him another glowing two-star review, citing his "open desire to transform food [so that] in his hands, even a simple green salad ... looks like a ruffled hat in a painting by Renoir." In March 2004 Marc opened his first solo enterprise with Landmarc [Tribeca], which won rave reviews both for its eclectic French and Italian menu as well as its highly untraditional wine list. Following its success, Marc opened Ditch Plains in the West Village in 2006 serving casual, beach-style cuisine such as lobster rolls, fish tacos and the infamous ditch dog, as well as other comfort food favorites. In 2007 Marc was given the opportunity to open another Landmarc restaurant in the pres­tigious Time Warner Center, where he brought his bistro-style cuisine midtown. In October 2013 Marc opened Kingside at the Viceroy New York hotel on New York's iconic West 57th Street, serving his interpretation of New American cuisine. Marc's restaurants now fall under the Benchmarc Restaurants by Marc Murphy name, where he acts as executive chef and owner. In addition to the restaurants, Marc also heads up the company's catering division, Benchmarc Events by Marc Murphy, where his signature style of accessible contemporary cuisine transcends the boundaries of what is offered in his restaurant locations. Today Marc's involvement in the industry moves beyond the restaurants as well, with a regular role as a judge on Food Network's top-rated hit Chopped as well as appearances on other hit series such as Guy's Grocery Games, Beat Bobby Flay and Worst Cooks in America. Marc also appears on The Rachael Ray Show and The Today Show, among others. He is the president of the Manhattan chapter of the New York State Restaurant Association, a board member of City Harvest, Culintro and Passport NYC at the 92nd Street Y Culinary Camp, as well as a member of the Food + Finance High School's Industry Advisory Board, a member of the Leadership Council for Share our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign and the national spokesperson for Share Our Strength's Dine Out For No Kid Hungry. In 2012 Marc joined the U.S. Department of State's Diplomatic Culinary Partnership, where he takes part in public diplomacy programs that engage foreign audiences abroad as well as those visiting the United States. Marc's debut cookbook, Season with Authority: Confident Home Cooking, was released by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt in April 2015.

On TV