Erica Sullivan Experiences Rising Popularity After 1500 Freestyle Silver Medal

To swimming fans, Erica Sullivan is a very familiar name, as Sullivan has been on the scene since the 2016 Olympic Trials meet where she placed 12th overall in the 800 freestyle. 

However, since winning an Olympic silver medal in the 1500 freestyle in Tokyo, Sullivan has quickly become a household name for more than just her swimming, becoming the first openly gay US swimmer to win an Olympic medal. Her feat has become a pinnacle of the Olympics within the media, including feature articles in the Washington Post, The New York Times, and other prominent media outlets. 

Her presence even grabbed the attention of BuzzFeed and Tumblr, with BuzzFeed calling her the “new lesbian supreme.” 

Sullivan first grabbed public attention during her post-race interview, where she spoke with the media in fluent-Japanese, her mother’s native language. She then proclaimed herself the “epitome of the American person,” explaining to reporters, “I’m multicultural. I’m queer. I’m a lot of minorities. That’s what America is. To me, America is not about being a majority. It’s about having your own start. The American Dream is coming to a country to establish what you want to do with your life.”

That response, in particular, earned praise from the LGBTQ+ community, with her Instagram and Twitter accounts blowing up. Although Sullivan’s Twitter fanatics have long been known within the swimming community (including many features on the TopTen Tweets), people also began to pick up on her quirky sense of humor, getting people to refer to her as “the queen of stan Twitter.” 

“Stan Twitter” specifically, is a side of Twitter where fans post content relating to their favorite celebrities, shows, or movies. Sullivan has been noted for her frequent references to the show “The Wilds”, along with several other celebrities. 

Recently, Sullivan has also grabbed the attention of global celebrities as well, gaining followers such as Camilla Cabello, Sarah Streicher, and Jill Gutowitz

Sullivan says that she’s extremely grateful for all of the support she’s received over the past week. “It’s amazing, the coolest people follow me on insta now,” Sullivan explained, “Camila (Cabello), the whole wilds cast, Katie Couric, Shannon Beveridge (YouTube). It’s been insane. I literally now have fans for being other people’s fan. And it’s strange that it suddenly happened bc I’ve always had top tier tweets if I do say so myself but like no one would read them. And now I’m getting praised for it. It’s insane but I’m so so so so eternally grateful.” 

 

In This Story

20
Leave a Reply

Subscribe
Notify of

20 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

It’s hard to not like her. She’s crazy good in the water. She’s so funny. And I also like her straight talk. She says what she wants. It’s so refreshing in the very refined world of sport where too often we hear robotic and conventional words.

Sub13
1 year ago

Yeah Sully 🌈

Gulliver’s Swimming Travels
1 year ago

She’s such an adorable swimming role model. I hope she makes others on the national team feel more comfortable coming out.

frizzaly
1 year ago

she’s so fun on tumblr! username is rics-fandom and you can send her anonymous questions that she’s been really great about answering

Mel
1 year ago

Erica is a good kid, err young lady. (I hope that terminology is correct. I just don’t know). I wish her the best.

Markster
Reply to  Mel
1 year ago

Don’t stress I doubt she’d ever spare a thought over what pronoun you decide to use

Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

If only we could be back to the times when anti-social media and smartphones didn’t exist.
The youth of today doesn’t realize how cooler and funnier it was without these addictive and dangerous tools.
We played outside. We didn’t spend our life in front of screens and we didn’t have our hands glued to a smartphone 8 hours a day.
I’m so glad I went to high school in the late 90s while it was still the real life.
Congrats to Erica Sullivan on your amazing year. In Paris your goal will be the gold.

Smith-Jacoby-Huske-Weitzeil
Reply to  Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

Katie Ledecky will repeat in the women’s 1500 meter freestyle and Erica Sullivan better watch her back for Katie Grimes (8:17.05, 15:52.12). That’s fifteen year old Katie Grimes from the Sandpipers of Nevada Swim Club.

Taa
Reply to  Smith-Jacoby-Huske-Weitzeil
1 year ago

Well if Grimes passes Sullivan she will probably blow by Ledecky also. I don’t know if we will see ledecky sub 8:15/15:40 again. She went 3:57 which was fast but her 800/1500 kinda sucked in comparison. Too much muscle now I guess

Backstrokebro
Reply to  Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

Bro you sound like you grow crabapples to throw at teenagers

Last edited 1 year ago by Backstrokebro
sven
Reply to  Backstrokebro
1 year ago

is that weird?

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Backstrokebro
1 year ago

Look out, Old Man Bobo’s huckin’ croissants again!

Random123
Reply to  Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

wow i expected you to be way older than someone who went to HS in the late 90s.

Fraser Thorpe
Reply to  Random123
1 year ago

Ditto!

UCswim
Reply to  Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

Ok boomer

PhillyMark
Reply to  UCswim
1 year ago

Sounds like he’s gen X

Hswimmer
Reply to  Bobo Gigi
1 year ago

You’d be an awful coach lol

MickeyMouse
1 year ago

With stan twitter in her arsenal, now she’s truly unstoppable.

Eagleswim
1 year ago

“I’ve always had top tier tweets if I do say so myself” haha what a queen

Steve Nolan
Reply to  Eagleswim
1 year ago

True top-tier poster mentality.

About Nicole Miller

Nicole Miller

Nicole has been with SwimSwam since April 2020, as both a reporter and social media contributor. Prior to joining the SwimSwam platform, Nicole also managed a successful Instagram platform, amassing over 20,000 followers. Currently, Nicole is pursuing her B.S. in Biomedical Engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. After competing for the swim …

Read More »