How Aly Raisman Plans to Follow in David Ortiz’s Footsteps

The Olympian wants to tackle the business world like her pal Big Papi.

David Ortiz and Aly Raisman

Photo by Elise Amendola / AP

Aly Raisman doesn’t plan on retiring like her pal David Ortiz just yet, but she does hope to channel her inner Big Papi in other ways, particularly when it comes to the world of business.

The Olympic gold medalist got a chance to mingle with startup stars and industry leaders as a featured speaker at the Forbes Under 30 Summit in Boston this week. Prior to speaking at Harvard on Tuesday morning, Raisman chatted with Boston magazine about her goals outside of gymnastics and her desire to build her business acumen like the Red Sox slugger.

Since Big Papi has a lot of experience with growing brands and sponsorships—both real and fictional—the Needham native hopes to pick his brain when she sees him at the 9th annual David Ortiz Celebrity Golf Classic in December.

“I know David is a very, very good businessman,” Raisman said. “I’m sure I’ll talk to him a lot more about it when I see him at the charity event.”

Aly Raisman

Photo by Uyen Cao for Forbes

The Olympian has become extremely close with Ortiz over the years and even likes to joke that Big Papi’s son is her new beau (sorry Colton Underwood).

“I know David Ortiz really well,” Raisman said. “His family has been so supportive. I always joke that his son D’Angelo is my boyfriend.”

Like Ortiz, Raisman hopes to use her platform as an athlete to maximize the success of her various business ventures, such as her line of leotards and socks. The gymnastics star also recently became a brand ambassador for Heart-Full Hands Jewelry.

While Raisman wasn’t sure what type of companies she wanted to work with following her first trip to the Olympics, the 22-year-old thinks she’s finally getting a hang of things and wants to work with more fashion focused partners.

“It’s been really, really exciting to be able to watch these companies start from the very beginning and watch them grow,” Raisman said. “A lot of these companies work with younger demographics which I think is perfect for me.”

“I’m very interested in business,” she added.

The business world may be new for the decorated Olympian, but the Raisman family has a long history with growing companies and crunching numbers. Her father Rick owns and operates an insurance company in Massachusetts while her mother Lynn, who helps with the brokerage as well, studied math at Harvard. Her grandfather was also a math professor at Boston College.

Although she barely has any time to rest as it is, Raisman is open to adding business school to her already busy schedule.

“I would love to,” Raisman said. “I’m sure they’d be very proud if I followed in their footsteps.”

For now, the two-time Team USA captain is focusing on growing her current business relationships as well as getting more involved with philanthropic endeavors. Raisman has been using her star power to help people with eating disorders through Walden Behavioral Care.

“My parents always said that it’s more important to be a kind and loving person rather than what you are on the podium,” Raisman said. “I think that’s the most important thing.”