Lindsay Kautiainen: SOSC’s Ray of Sunshine 

By Tierra Wilson

Lindsay, like many other Special Olympics Athletes, enjoyed playing sports as a child but was not sure how she could play in a safe space. 23 years later Lindsay has taken everything Special Olympics Southern California has to offer and made lifelong friends and connections. Although Lindsay loves basketball (fun fact: her dream job is to be a Basketball Coach) she has participated in many sports and events including, softball, bowling, floor hockey, soccer and team wellness. More recently she participated in Move Across California, and the Virtual Sports league which she did with her friends and family. 

Being a part of Special Olympics has a special place in Lindsay’s heart, Special Olympics gives Lindsay a chance to stay busy and make new friends with each year that she participates.

“I love the coaches and the athletes, they are great people.”

Those who know Lindsay have the same feelings for her. Both Wendy Ellet and Coach Scott Norton sing nothing but praises of Lindsay. Ellet expresses her admiration of Lindsay by saying, “ Lindsay is a dream athlete, she listens to her coaches and has great sportsmanship.” This is maintained by Coach Norton. When asked his thoughts about Lindsay his response was shocked but not unexpected of the basketball player.

“If you get me started on Lindsay I might not stop. She is a coach’s dream. She loves basketball and it shows in everything she does. She is a hard worker and does whatever she is asked. She is a great defender and rebounder, and a tremendous shooter. My nickname for her is ‘Automatic’, because she rarely misses. Here’s the best thing about her though, she’s a better person than she is a basketball player and that’s saying a lot. Everyone loves Lindsay, she’s happy, friendly, and positive. She always has a smile on her face. I can’t say enough good things about her.

Outside of being an amazing basketball player and all around amazing person and athlete, Lindsay spends her time by working at her local Albertson’s. Working at Albertsons after spending a few years volunteering at a pet store and working during her time in college at the school’s cafeteria. Albertsons keeps Lindsay busy, she is a courtesy clerk but her duties do not stop there. With her “Can Do” attitude, Lindsay is utilized across the store to perform various tasks in different departments. In friendly Lindsay fashion, she chimes that her favorite part of working is being able to talk to customers on a daily basis. Not only does she have the ‘can do’ attitude she encourages others to do the same. She says the best way to be successful is never give up, keep applying for jobs until you find one, and work hard at your job once you obtain one. We all can take a bit of advice from Lindsay. 

Lindsay is such a kind soul and brings such a positive light to not only Special Olympics, but anybody in her sphere of influence.  




  1. Lindsay you are awesome!!!


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