She was born on July 26, 1956, in Chicago, Illinois, and raised in Greenwich, Connecticut. She learned to skate as a young girl on her grandparent's pond, and immediately became dedicated to the sport, begging her parents to take her to formal lessons at 4:30am to learn how to skate backwards. Her big breakthrough came when she won silver medals in the 1974 and 1975 World Championships. At the age of 19, she won the gold medal at the 1976 Winter Olympic Games in Innsbruck, Austria, and soon to be known as ‘America’s Sweetheart’ for her sweet face and bobbed hairstyle. Dorothy toured with the Ice Capades from 1977 to 1984.