Paula Kann

Biographical information

TypeCompeted in Olympic Games
Full namePaula•Kann (-Valar)
Used namePaula•Kann
Born1 February 1922 in Wien (Vienna) (AUT)
Died2 November 2001 in Franconia, New Hampshire (USA)
Measurements165 cm / 63 kg
AffiliationsEastern Slope Ski Club, North Conway (USA)
NOC United States


Paula Kann was born in Austria but settled in North Conway, New Hampshire with her family when she was a young child. She was US downhill champion in 1946 and won the Harvey Gibson giant slalom title six times. Kann set the record for the fastest time on the Wildcat Trail, near North Conway. At the 1947 US Ski Championships in Utah, the Swiss ski team had been invited to compete. There Paula Kann met Paul Valar, a Davos native on the Swiss team. A romance ensued and they later married in June 1950. They settled in New Hampshire, where they both became professional ski instructors and were instrumental in helping develop the Granite State’s ski community. Paul founded the Franconia Ski School at Cannon Mountain, and together they ran ski schools at the Mittersill and Mt. Sunapee ski areas in New Hampshire through the 1970s. Paul helped form the Professional Ski Instructors of America (PSIA) and was given lifetime membership in the group in 1974. Both were inducted into the US Ski Hall of Fame, Paula Kann-Valar in 1970 and Paul Valar in 1985.


Games Discipline (Sport) / Event NOC / Team Pos Medal As
1948 Winter Olympics Alpine Skiing (Skiing) USA Paula Kann
Downhill, Women (Olympic) 28
Slalom, Women (Olympic) 11