Olympian Sanya Richards-Ross (Photo by Errol Anderson)

One of the most decorated female track and field athletes of all time, Sanya Richards-Ross, will be the speaker for the Cultural Dinner celebrating Black History Month at 5 p.m. Monday, February 18, in the Brown Ballroom of Illinois State University.

Tickets are available at the two Illinois State Dining Centers and must be purchased in advance. Tickets will be one swipe of a card for those students with a meal plan, $15 to students, faculty and staff without a meal plan, and $17.25 plus tax for community members. Tickets will go on sale Jan. 30.

Four-time Olympic gold medalist Richards-Ross knows what it’s like to climb back up the tower in sports. After competing in the 2008 Olympics and 2009 track and field season, she was injured several times to the point of a non-active 2010 season. Her 2011 season was dedicated to working her way back into form, which gained her an impressive 46.66-second time in the 400-meter run. In the 2012 Olympics she tied to become one of the most decorated female track and field athletes of all time.

Richards-Ross is a part of the Livestrong campaign, a group set up to provide support in the fight against cancer. She is also a fighter against Rule 40, which restricts advertising activities of athletes and coaches surrounding the Olympics. BET has featured the Olympian as well, and highlighted her love for fashion.

The Cultural Dinner is sponsored by University Housing Services along with Campus Dining Services, MECCPAC, Watterson Diversity Coalitions, Watterson Area Government, Association of Residence Halls and Black Student Union.

If you need a special accommodation to attend this event, please contact University Housing at (309) 438-8611.