Derek Parra was a Mexican-American speed skater who started out as an inline speed skater, but followed the lead of KC Boutiette and Jen Rodriguez and switched to speed skating. On roller skates, Parra was a two-time World Champion and won three US Championships. As a speed skater he has two silver medals from World Championships, a silver in the 1,500 at the Single Distance Championships in 2001, and silver in the 1,500 at the 2002 World Allrounds. He was also third overall at the 2002 World Allrounds, his best year, as he won his Olympic gold medal in the 1,500 and silver in the 5,000 at Salt Lake City. Parra continued to compete thru the 2006 Winter Olympics but with less success, and retired after the Torino Games. He is now the US national all-round speed skating coach. As a Mexican-American Parra was the first US Hispanic male to win a medal or gold medal at the Winter Olympics.
Personal Bests: 500 – 35.88 (2001); 1000 – 1:08.87 (2003); 1500 – 1:43.95 (2002); 3000 – 3:46.14 (2002); 5000 – 6:17.98 (2002); 10000 – 13:33.44 (2002); Sprint Combination – 142.685 (2006); Allround Samalog – 153.661 (2002).