“I don’t know exactly where my mother found the name Tenley. When I asked her, she said, “I just liked the sound.” Only as a teen did I learn about Tenley Circle in Washington, DC, but she had never heard of it. I love my name and have kept a folder over the years of the children who write to me and send me pictures because they were named after me. I have even heard of dogs, cows, roses and orchids named Tenley. My bridal bouquet held Tenley Albright orchids!”
We would love to know the story of how you – or someone you know – came to be named Tenley. We’d love to see pictures. Email us your stories and pictures to contribute to an online archive for us all. Also, stay in touch via twitter @hellotenley and Facebook’s My Name is Tenley page. Even if you are not attending the event, which is closed for registration due to max capacity, we would like to be in touch! This website and social media accounts are managed on her behalf by Dr Tenley’s daughter, Elee Kraljii Gardiner.
Here are your stories of being named Tenley:
From Alyson Cox:
My Tenley is 10 years old. Her name was definitely inspired by Tenley Albright. I love watching Olympic figure skating. When I was pregnant, I was doing some reading online, and I came across Dr. Tenley’s story. I was moved by how she overcame physical adversity with figure skating, and impressed by her career success. Plus, I just fell in love with the name! People always ask me where I came up with this name, and I am glad to share the story. Sometimes people laugh and say sarcastically that I didn’t give my little girl TOO much to live up to! But my Tenley is super energetic, very funny, and intelligent. I think I chose well.
From Wanda Lane:
I’m the mother of our sweet Tenley Mae. Tenley is 5 and so excited that she gets to come to this celebration, she calls it her special “Tenley party”. When my husband and I found out we were expecting a girl we were so excited and couldn’t wait to meet her. I was named after both of my grandmothers and knew that when I had a daughter of my own I wanted to continue that tradition. My mothers middle name Is Mae and we decided we liked that for our girl but needed a first name to go with it. As we talked about names nothing was really striking us as our daughter. If I liked a name my husband didn’t and if he liked a name I didn’t and so it went for a couple of months. My husband had mentioned the name Tenley so we started doing research and found out that Tenley is an English name and we both have a little English in our family background. We also didn’t want a name that lots of other kids her age would have and this is such a pretty name. As time passed we both just fell in love with the name and when we held her for the first time the name Tenley just seemed like it was meant for her. Tenley has two younger sisters Olivia is four and Sophia is 10 months. Tenley Mae is a very kind and loves her sisters more than anything and loves to help mommy do anything with here baby sister. Tenley is an amazing little girl with a strong will and a bright personality and we feel so blessed to have her as our daughter. We are really looking forward to watching her grow from an amazing little girl to an amazing woman. During the Olympics she loved to watch ice skating is and so excited to meet someone with her name and a love for ice skating.
From Tenley Thompson:
Here is my story about being named after Tenley Albright:
My mom was pregnant with me during the 1980 Winter Olympics. American Express was running an ad featuring Tenley Albright. When my mom and dad saw the ad they decided right then and there to name me Tenley if I was a girl. They loved the sound and feel of ‘Tenley Thompson’ with no middle name. And throughout my life, my nickname has been TT.
I have always loved my name. No matter how many times I have to spell it for people because it is not familiar to them, I love it being unusual. I feel proud when telling the story about Tenley Albright and how I was named after her.
But the story gets more interesting; it turns out I have the same birthdate as Tenley Albright. I was born on July 18th too. We didn’t know that until I was about 13. Pure coincidence but very interesting in its fatefulness.
Lastly, another coincidence. My aunt had a friend who served on the Olympic Committee with Tenley Albright. She was able to get me a signed copy of a meeting program signed by Tenley Albright which I have treasured all my life.
From Nikki Hanson:
Our daughter, Tenley Rose, was born on a beautiful, crisp December day in 2010. On the day she arrived, we still had not decided on a name. Despite having a handful of “boy” names chosen and ready to be used, my husband and I only had only one or two “girl” names in mind. For nine plus months my “mothers instincts” kept telling me that we were having a boy, but to our astonishment, we were blessed with a beautiful little girl. We knew immediately that there was something overwhelmingly special about her and that our lives had been changed for the better.
As we gazed down at this little angel, we realized that the few names we had chosen were not fitting enough for her. We wanted so desperately to put a name to this face and to give our daughter her own identity. I will never forget the moment my husband looked at me and said, “There is a name we loved a few months back. What about Tenley?” The moment he said this, we both realized that there was no other name more perfect for our little girl; Tenley Rose it would be.
We introduced Tenley to her big brother, Trey, who instantly became a fan of his little sister and the name we had chosen for her. When announcing Tenley to our family and friends, many responded with “I love her name. Where did you find it?” To be honest, we are not quite sure when or where we came across such a unique, beautiful name. It was not until my own grandmother had visited us at Mount Auburn Hospital later that afternoon that I learned of the significance of the name and the amazing person behind it. “Nicole, do you know who Tenley Albright is?”, she asked, after picking up her great-granddaughter for the very first time. After learning of Tenley Albright’s story that day and her amazing legacy, I could not have been more proud of our choice.
We look forward to the day when we can share Tenley Albright’s story with our daughter and when we do, we hope that she will feel the same sense of pride. Today, Tenley Rose is 3 years old. We can only hope that as she grows from 3 to 13 and then from 13 to 30, that she will strive to become as influential and inspiring as the woman she shares her name with
Our Tenley is looking forward to meeting you all in July and keeps asking about her “special Tenley day.”
From Tenley Mossing:
I am really looking forward to this party and meeting Tenley Albright!
I like my name Tenley and always wondered how Tenley Albright got her name. I always knew where I got the name “Tenley Albright”. My mother is a huge fan of figure skating and named me Tenley in 1961 after Tenley Albright’s Olympic Championship in 1956.
Because Tenley is such an unusual name and ever since I can remember, when people met me they first complimented me on my name and then curiously ask where did my name came from. They would assume it was a family name passed on to me. First, I would explain I was not related to Tenley Albright, then I told the figure skating success story of Tenley Albright. It always comes up when I’m asked my name on the phone or when I meet someone whom I’ve never met before. There was a three year period in my life where I used the name “Laura”. I was working for MBNA bank and we were timed on our phone calls at the call center. Introducing myself as Tenley always brought up the long conversation of where my name came from. I took between 30 to 60 calls a day. My supervisor preferred that I spend more time discussing the credit cards and interest rates, than my name and Tenley Albright. It did not take long for them to change my name to Laura at work.
I’ve enjoyed being named after Tenley and really look forward to meeting her. Thank you very much for putting on this event!
From Teresa Rivera:
My friend mentioned that you gather these stories, so I wanted to write about my daughter. We did name our daughter Tenley (Jean Rivera). She was born in July 1980 and we were watching an Olympic story on TV during my pregnancy. We were inspired by the story and thought this would be a great name. We used to vacation in Sun Valley and enjoyed watching the skating. However, Tenley was not a good ice skater. Rather she was a good student and became a sterling scholar in science. She went on to get a scholarship to medical school and is currently doing residency in Seattle. She transfers to Boise to finish her residency this summer. She tells others, very proudly, that she was named after Tenley Albright, however she never was able to get the ice skating down, but did follow in the profession. It is fun to think about how people with the same name do follow the same path! Thank you for sharing and being such an inspiration.
From Tenley Dexter:
Marilyn Guilfoyle, a current skating judge and a long time friend of both my mom, Carol Jeanne Hoag, and my dad, Victor Chlaupek, of Queens, NY, all skaters, saw the article in Skating and my Dad forwarded it me.
My Mom, Carol Jeanne Hoag Chlaupek, knew Tenley, competed against her, liked her and the name so gave it go me when I was born in 1956.
My Mom continued skating for pleasure with us three kids but alas, my interests lay in horses and animals and I’ve both been a horse trainer, competitor and now a stockdog trainer and competitor with my Australian Shepherd dogs. (http://www.northeastherdinginfo.com/Tenley.htm)
Best to Tenley Albright and this great idea to get all the Tenley’s together!
From Melissa Boasberg:
What a fabulous web site and idea! My Tenley Schvimmer is almost 5 years old, and I have attached a picture of her in her cousin’s ice skating outfit – I thought that was appropriate for Dr. Albright!
One of the people who posted on your site, Judy Stephenson, named her daughter Tenley 43 (?) years ago. I met that Tenley 20 years ago in California, and I loved her name the first time I heard it! We fell out of touch, but when I was pregnant, I called mutual friends to get her contact info and reached out to her to see how she liked her name. She told me she loved it and that her mom wasn’t sure how she had thought to name her that (her mom thought she had made it up). Then Tenley Stephenson told me about Dr. Albright, plus I’m from DC where there is a Tenley Circle, and thus another Tenley was born!
She and I are very excited to join you in Boston on July 19th.
From Christi Jones:
I opened Skating Magazine on Saturday to see the article summoning all Tenleys. So… This is our 1 year old, Tenley Jane Jones. Born February 15th, 2013 into our skating family, she’s made several trips to the rink(s) with mom and dad before we finally put on her skates last month. She’s curious, happy, and fearless by nature, she seems to love the ice and the wind in her face, and I look forward to seeing if her love for the sport will grow over the years. Tenley Albright was certainly an inspiration behind our choosing the name for our daughter. In all that Albright has accomplished in her years, she is certainly someone I hope my daughter will be proud to be named after. Many in the skating community have also noted to us that her birthday falls on the anniversary that the 1961 World Figure Skating team perished on their way to the World Championships. While we see it at purely coincidental, perhaps our Tenley will leave her own impression on the sport with a unique story to tell someday. For now, we are enjoying her curious, fearless, and sweet disposition, her belly laughs and daily discoveries.
From Tenley Newton:
I just found out a possible origin for the name: the Tibetan name Tinley (pronounced T(r)inleh), which means ‘enlightened activity’. There is a contemporary Tibetan religious leader with the surname Tenley.
I’d always thought that my mother had named me Tenley because she loves the Olympics and Ice Skating, but I found out a few years ago that my father was the culprit. When my mom was carrying my older brother Mark, dad wanted to name the baby Tenley but the baby was a boy so he had to wait. Next came my sister, but my mom wanted to name her Lynn, so dad had to wait yet again. I was next, born 9/20/54, and I was the lucky one that got the moniker. I was especially thrilled to learn that Dr. Tenley lived in Newton, Mass., as my last name is Newton. I wrote her a letter when I was 12 years old but cannot remember where I might have sent it. I’ve worked in hospitals for most of my life, and have met a few doctors over the years who knew Dr. Tenley from medical school.
When I asked my father why he wanted to name me (or, apparently, any kid that turned up) Tenley, he said that he was incredibly impressed with her. We talked about it the other day and it sounds like he had a bit of a crush on Dr. Tenley.
I have always loved my name. It is unusual and frequently calls for comment, but people always remember you! I always got a kick out of first day roll call during grade school because the teacher would get to my name, pause, and say “Mr. Newton?”. It’s also handy for my art work. People think it’s a great name for a painter. I just think it’s a great name, period.
From Nadine Rutledge:
What a great Idea to get the Tenley’s together and what an awesome chance to meet Mrs. Tenley Albright herself! Ironically our Tenley is the daughter to myself, a figure skate coach and my husband who was a Zamboni driver when we first met in 1987! She has also taken up skating at age 5 when she decided her swimming career was ‘done’. Our Tenley came into the world May 13 2005. My husband and I had both boy and girl names picked out, but we were sure we were having a boy. Surprise! Once meeting her we both decided the girl names we had just didn’t fit. So we turned to the Skating magazine I had brought with and came upon Mrs. Albrights name. I had thought of the name early in my pregnancy and once reading it out loud to my husband on her delivery day, it just fit. Picking out the name for our little one was tough as I grew up with an odd name and loved it so I wanted my baby to have a unique name as well, but not too crazy. The name Tenley is unique but very elegant. We do find nicknames for her such as T, Tenners, T-bub, and Tenny Mae (her middle name is Mae after Mae West and also means goddess of spring!). She loves her name too as many people comment on it and ask about it.
Tenley Mae figure skates, swims, Fences and does ballet. She also loves to fish, boat, snowmobile, loves animals and is an excellent reader and does very well in school. She is very aware of her namesake and is proud to have been named for such an accomplished lady. She is working on her axel and back scratch spins are her favorite. She just tested her pre-pre moves and free and loves to perform in front of an audience. She loves to do Artistic events at competition as she is very musical. She would be so excited if they all got to skate together!
We are looking forward to this summer, can’t wait!
From Tenley Sterkel:
To be perfectly honest, I love my name: I love being a Tenley.
It hasn’t always been easy. I can’t tell you the number of times I have had to correct the pronunciation of my name or had spell my name out for someone. And sure, there were times when I was young, that I sometimes dreamed of having a common name, but I never could decide on one. Deep down I think it was because I didn’t really want a common name. I just wanted to want one simply because I didn’t have one. As I got older I realized there was no way any common name could compare.
Over the years, I have gotten so many compliments on my name, and have been asked to tell the story of how I got it, something I have really enjoyed sharing.
Growing up in Michigan in the late 50s/early 60s with an outdoor rink in the park right across from their house, my mom fell in love with ice skating. She skated for many years, and participated in a group called the Hockettes. I always say “it’s kind of like the Rockettes but on ice.” In truth, the Hockettes was the first synchronized skating team in the country. In 1971, my mom got the opportunity to perform with the Hockettes in Madison Square Garden in a performance that Tenley Albright was also starring.
My mom got the chance to meet Tenley Albright that day, despite Tenley Albright seeing to her duties as a doctor between rehearsing and performing. As an avid skating fan, my mom had seen Tenley Albright on television and knew that she had gone on to a career as a respected doctor and surgeon. However, it was in meeting her, that my mom realized how truly outstanding Tenley Albright really is, not only as a skater, physician, and woman, but as a person.
Cut to my birth some 17 years later, my mom still remembered and liked the name, Tenley. She even searched in baby name books to figure out the origin of the name, but couldn’t even find it in the books. In the end, she figured that having a role model as amazing and talented as Tenley Albright was reason enough.
To this day, I have never met another Tenley. I hope I’m able to make it in July to change that.
From Lindsay Brennan: I wanted to share how we came to name our second baby Tenley. I’m not sure why we didn’t think of the name on our first pregnancy (we named our first daughter Emma). When I became pregnant with baby #2 we did not find out the sex. We knew if it was a boy, his name would be Ryan after my husband’s brother who passed away as a child. My husband and I had watched the movie Summer Catch years ago when we first met and the girl main character’s name was Tenley. We started talking about it with the second pregnancy and decided we loved it. We also thought it was a sign that the boy main characters name in that movie was Ryan! We wanted to keep the name a secret so we only told our parents. My mom mentioned the Olympic skater/surgeon Tenley Albright and I decided to look her up. When I did research, I found out that her middle name is Emma and that made our decision since our first daughter is Emma Rose! We get so any compliments on the name! My father in law loves to joke around and say, “they were going to name her five-ley but when they saw her they knew she was perfect so they named her Tenley!!” We look forward to this summers function!
From Tenlee Di Pierro:
My parents saw Tenley Albright skate sometime in the 50’s and loved her name. So, they named me Tenlee (just changed the spelling a little). I live in Maine, and have met a couple other Tenley’s but I only know one other Tenlee because she was named after me. I hope to attend the party in July! That would be really fun.
From Tenley Westbrook:
One thing I can say about having a name like Tenley- people really do remember you! This has helped me a great deal as a singer/songwriter and speaker who benefits from having a unique and beautiful name. My mom, who is from Brighton, MA, named me Tenley because she admired you so much. She told me that she thought that if she named her daughter after a special person, her daughter would grow up to be a special person. Well, Dr. Tenley, I pray that I have had some success in carrying on your name with honor and in honoring my parents who gave me the name. It will be a huge joy for us to join you and other Tenleys in Boston this summer. Thank you for giving so much of yourself to others for so many years. You are an inspiration to this Tenley!
From Tenley Oliver Berta:
My name is Tenley Oliver Berta. I would not be surprised if I was the first baby named after Tenley Albright. I was born in Boston in 1955 and grew up in Needham Mass. I had no middle name so because the name was so unusual I was often thought to be a male (Oliver Tenley). In fact Liberty Mutual car insurance overcharged me for a couple of years because of that! I always thought that I would marry someone with an obvious last name (like Smith or Jones) but I married a Berta (no regrets there) and now at least when they reverse it I am a female! I have explained and spelled my name countless times all my almost 59 years. Tenley Albright’s story has been told by me all around America and even in some foreign countries! While I have yet to meet Tenley Albright, I have communicated with her via a couple of Christmas cards after my parents had a chance meeting with her when I was just a child. My husband also had a chance meeting with her many years ago at an airport! While it sometimes was not easy growing up with an unusual name in the 50’s and 60’s, I would not have it any other way. It was a great character builder and a great conversation piece. Most people LOVE my name and the story that goes with it. In all my life I have never come face to face with another Tenley and I am thrilled to be attending this event and to meet the woman I have been bragging about all these years! I took a couple of short videos of my parents talking about naming me and their encounter with Tenley Albright but the files were too big to attach here so I uploaded them to youtube and posted them on the facebook page. My mother is 96 (almost completely blind and hard of hearing) and my father just turned 97! Thank you so much for putting all this together! To see the video Tenley Oliver took of her dad, Chuck, click here! Here is her mom Wini’s accompanying video, too! When I asked my father how he knew the exact date of his encounter with your mother he pulled out a log and showed me the entry. I have attached a picture. The 180 on the notation for the Howard Johnson stop indicates that they spent $1.80. He is a fascinating man and I thought you would get a kick out of it!
Thank you so much for all you are doing. I am sure it means a lot to your mother but I also know it means a lot to me and the other Tenleys out there. I did find out that Tenley Smith, who I contacted through facebook, was born a few months before me, which takes me out of the running for being the first baby named after your mother!
From Jodi Eck:
Our Tenley is almost 8 and her twin brothers name is Nolan. We currently live in South Dakota. Their dad and I have always been in sports and followed all kinds of sports. My husband Jon is a huge baseball fan, so that is where we started for our son’s name when we found out we were having a boy and a girl. We compromised on Nolan, which was my favorite from the start. My husband had other favorites…which were not going to happen. Sandy, Orel, & Rollie….for those of you who follow baseball. Then it came down to a girl’s name. We were sitting around watching the movie “Summer Catch” and the leading actress had the name of Tenley. It seemed familiar to me so I turned to Google….and Tenley Albright came up. Growing up I spent countless hours watching figure skating on tv. So our Tenley Christine, aka…nene, tenny, ten, & peanut…is quite the little girl. She loves to read & make crafts. She can talk all day long about nothing, but it is something that may mean the world to her. She loves pink, is a total girly girl, but is a great softball player. We are also very excited to come to the get together. It will be Tenley’s first time on a plane.
From Tenley Smith, this essay she wrote about having an unusual name:
When I was born, my name was Tenley Kay Karsten. I was named after Olympic gold-medalist ice skater, Tenley Albright, who has since become a doctor in Boston. Through my life, my name has always been a point of central focus and a very important part of my life. As a child, most of my teachers and other adults thought my name was pretty or unusual, but I did not view it as such – nor did my peers. I can vividly remember all the horrible names that my playmates cruelly bestowed upon me: “Tin Can”, “Ten Pin”, “Rin-Tin-Tin” (after a dog on TV), and worst of all, “Ten Ton”. Even the doctor who delivered me would jokingly call me “Fourly”, “Fively”, or “Sixly” depending on my age at the time of my yearly checkups. I insisted that my mother take me for a special visit to his office shortly after my tenth birthday, just so he would call me by my correct name. My name was a burden that I did not want to carry. I longed for a more common name like that of my sisters, Sue and Kim. I wanted it so much that I coerced one of my cousins into calling me by my middle name, Kay, which she did for many years. I hated my name and much to my mother’s dismay, I told her so. When I first met my husband, he renamed me “Sam” for quite some time. I’m still not sure if it was because he didn’t like the name Tenley or if he just didn’t want to have to explain it to his friends and family. For several months, his parents actually thought that Tenley was my last name, which is another dilemma I often face. Regardless of his motives behind the name change, I didn’t mind at all; in fact, I rather enjoyed being called Sam. With so many negative experiences associated with my name, one might expect that I would be a very distraught person. However, events surrounding my name began to change for the better shortly after high school and early into adulthood. I first experienced positive feelings about my name when I married and became Tenley Smith. The syllables and accents of my new name seemed to fit together better and sound more natural. The fact that “Smith”, such a common, easy-to-remember last name, was linked to such an unusual first name also seemed to take on some sort of special significance. In each new adventure or endeavor that I undertook – whether it was a new college course, an organization I joined, or a new job opportunity, my name was always the center of attention. Everyone always wanted to know where I got my name and told me how much they liked it. Being more mature, I was not so easily troubled at receiving such special attention, although I did try to down play it as much as possible. Then another series of events involving my name started to occur. In my art classes, I could sign only my first name on the bottom of my work and everyone knew to whom it belonged. I compared this to being like Picasso! When the movie “10” starring Bo Derek came out, my nickname “Ten” took on a whole new dimension. And, after calling into a popular St. Louis radio station during a few of their contests, I quickly became known on a first-name-only basis with the DJ’s. Once I even received a letter in the mail with only “Tenley Smith” on the envelope… no street address, city, or state! Wow!! I thought this kind of thing happened only to movie stars! I began to realize that my name had great powers of intrigue and instant recall. Having always wanted to be famous, I now possessed a means by which to make my dreams come true. While I am far from famous, there are few people who don’t remember my name once we’ve met. My name has become the basis for me to make a permanent impression upon those I meet. Of course, in order to make a positive impression, I must do whatever it takes to be the best. This has created an internal drive to live up to being a ten (10) in everything I do. I recently realize that my birth name both started and ended the same – with “ten”. Tenley Kay Karsten. Since marriage, this is no longer the case; but I find it interesting that this theme of “ten” was prevalent in my name from the very beginning. I’m happy to say that I have done a complete turnaround in my feelings for and attitude towards my name. Now when someone misspells or mispronounces my name, it doesn’t bother me at all to point out the proper spelling or pronunciation. It even becomes an ice-breaker of sorts, as I often tell people that I was making my debut when Tenley Albright was making hers. Then they ask me if I skate, and I say, “No, I’m a swimmer. But it’s all water-related.” And, when young children have trouble saying my name and inadvertently give me a new name such as Tinsley or Tingley or Tennellie, I just smile and answer to it, making a mental note of the new variation. I now look upon my name as a very special part of me. It is the one thing that sets me apart from others as someone who is truly genuine, unique and rare. Before my mother passed away, I told her about my new attitude towards my name and how much I really love it. I think she was pleased. Over the years, it’s been my dream to meet my namesake. In 1999, I located Dr. Tenley Albright’s phone number and called her office, leaving a message on her voice mail. She returned the call, and left a message on my voice mail, but I never spoke to her directly. In 2001, I wrote to her, asking her to send a note to my mother, who was dying of cancer. I don’t know if she ever sent the note or not, but I was elated to get an autographed photo of ice skater Tenley Albright in the mail. I’ve met a few other Tenley’s in my lifetime, but there sure aren’t many of us. In 2010, I was part of a FaceBook group of Tenley’s. Using that site, I actually planned a gathering of people named Tenley in Tenleytown, a historic neighborhood in Northwest, Washington, DC. on Dr. Tenley Albright’s 75th birthday. Unfortunately, there weren’t many participants, and the event was eventually cancelled. So now, I am super excited that Dr. Tenley Albright is hosting a get together of all persons named Tenley this coming summer!!! God willing, I will be there! THANK YOU SO MUCH!!
From Alison Albright:
My name is Alison Albright and my 18 year old daughter’s name is Tenley Jane Albright. She was born in NY in 1995 (which happened to be the 50th anniversary of Hiroshima day). She was named for you and for my aunt Jane who is passionate about Olympic skating. Tenley is currently on an educational exchange in Holland. She has been cheering their speed skaters on. I mentioned that she could not find a better role model. We look forward to celebrating your birthday!
From Megan Walsh:
Our baby, Tenley Evelyn Walsh was born June 21, 2013. We live in Oyster Bay Cove, NY but, I am originally from Boston, MA where I first heard of the name Tenley. Growing up I was a figure skater and trained at the Skating Club of Boston as did my mother Roberta Griffin before me. I grew up hearing the stories of my mother and how it was so difficult for her to become a member at The skating Club. Being denied multiple times until Dr. Tenley Albright wrote a letter on her behalf. My mother (who is still a member) is forever grateful and still has the letter to this day! I have never had the pleasure of meeting Tenley, but I did occasionally skate on sessions with her daughter Elin. I absolutely love the unique name, and love that it holds a special meaning to my family!
From Tenley Gomes:
My name is Tenley Gomes. I am from Taunton, MA, just south of Boston. When my mother was pregnant with me she read an article on you in Sports Illustrated and fell in love with the name Tenley. Thank god because I was originally suppose to be named Zoey. I love my name. I’m the only Tenley in my town which is really cool and I have never met anyone with the same name as me. The name Tenley has always been special to me. It makes me feel unique and different. Every time I tell someone my name I have to repeat it because they have never heard it and don’t understand what I’m saying. Once I get through the explanation every one always tells me how much they love it. I never expected that their were so many Tenleys in this world. I can not wait for the gathering in Boston! I am looking forward to meeting everyone with this unique name and of course the fabulous Tenley Albright who is truly an inspiration.
From Tenley Carmen:
Hello! I’m Tenley Carmen, a fellow Tenley. It is so wonderful to be connected with all of these lovely ladies with the same name. Being a Tenley has been a very unique experience that I’m glad we’ve been able to share. I wasn’t named after Dr.Albright specifically, but I’m glad to share the namesake with such a talented woman! My mom heard my name in high school and prayed to have a girl, just to use the name! She had me about 10 years later, and still tells me she loves it. We are a lucky few!
From Dan Radack:
We have a ten-year old daughter named “Tenlea”. There’s a little story to how we named her (and the spelling we used) that tangentially involves Dr. Albright. My wife and I moved to the Tenleytown/ American University neighborhood of Washington DC in the late 1990’s. Our first two kids – both boys – were named Jake and Sam. When my wife was carrying our third child and I found out it was a girl, I was thinking about a more original name. My commute to work is usually on the Washington DC Metro and my stop is the Tenleytown Metro Station so I walked by the station sign everyday and kept thinking to myself: “Hmmm, ‘Tenley’ – now that would be original!” But before I ran the name by my wife, I asked my sister who lives in Massachusetts (where we all grew up), whether I was crazy for naming my daughter after a DC metro station. “Not at all,” she replied “Haven’t you heard of Tenley Albright, the Olympic ice skater and brain surgeon?” I couldn’t think of a better role model for our daughter. It took a bit of convincing for my wife, who actually had been a competitive ice skater, who was worried that Tenlea might get teased in school since we live in Tenleytown. The compromise was to change the “y” to an “a” which allows us to pronounce her name with a short “a” at the end like “Leah.” But most people pronounce it like “Tenley” and, thankfully, she has never been teased. Everyone really loves the name! So, our Tenlea is in fact named after our Metro Station but sort of consecrated by Tenley Albright.
From Tara Picard:
Our baby Tenley was born August 31, 2013, and she is a “perfect ten” as a friend of ours joked! She is the absolute sweetest baby! Her big brother is her biggest fan, although when you ask him her name he will often say “ninely.” We decided on her name after seeing it on a sibling name generator website. Our son has a unique name, Kason, so we wanted a name that would go nicely with his. We must have gone through a hundred names without agreeing on one before we came across Tenley. We both loved it! As with any unique name, we are used to having to repeat it at least once when asked her name, and usually have to explain where it came from. It is worth it for her to have such a beautiful and unique name! What a fun idea to have a Tenley convention!
From Kendra Seifert:
Hi Dr Albright, My aunt found your web page through the Herald and I just had to send in pics of our Tenley! We will definitely come to the Tenley get together in July. We live in MA. Our Ten was born June 11, 2013 and is the sweetest baby around! I’m a little biased but she really is the best! I’ve always loved different names like mine, Kendra and my sister Brenna… Tenley is even better though! We look forward to meeting you someday!
From Alle Aufderhaar:
A friend just passed me the link to this website— so nice that there is a community of Tenleys out there! I am the proud Mommy of one Tenley Jude, age 5. Tenley loves art, reading, purple unicorns, and her stuffed grey bunny, appropriately named ‘GreyGrey’. She is thrilled to be a part of such an amazing community of girls and women who share her beautiful and unique name, and who no doubt share a love of challenge, adventure and exploration. By way of background, I (Tenley’s mom) went to high school many years ago in Milton, MA with a Tenley. I always thought it was a great and unusual name, and carried it with me for the years that intervened before my sweet girl was born. I grew up in Beacon Hill—although we live in the Bay Area these days, and Tenley is SF born— so perhaps there is a center of ‘Tenley gravity’ that emanates from Boston. Attached please find a picture of Sweet Tenley Jude (with GreyGrey), who thinks it is SUPREMELY COOL that she shares a name with one of the great figure skaters of all time. She will be watching the winter Olympics this month, and thinking of her namesake, and the many paths that you carved for those who came after! Best to you and all the wonderful Tenleys out there!
From Tenley St. Pierre:
I am so excited about my name! I love having something so different and unique, something that no one else I know has. I was originally supposed to be named Amanda. My mom had a friend in high school named Tenley, and she ran into her about a week or so before I was born, so at the moment, I was forever Tenley. I think it suites me better! I remember growing up, having many different nicknames, Ten, Tenners, Tenten, and those creative ones, Nineley, 123456789tenley. I also made sure I was always the #10 when I played sports. I think the only downside was never being able to have those keychains or anything that said my name on it! I did have my license plate as “Tenley” for a while though, in both NH and VA!! I remember doing a project in like third grade on Tenley Albright and wanting to meet her sometime, because how often do you meet another Tenley. I am so excited for the meet up, and after reading a lot of the stories on the website, I find it really cool, that a lot of Tenley’s are from the New England area. It’s really surprising how we’ve all never met before! Can’t wait!
From Lindsay Rogers, via Facebook:
Our 2.5 year old daughter is named Tenley. After college, my husband worked security at a hotel in Boston where he met Tenley Albright and always loved the name. I lived in Chatham when the movie Summer Catch was filmed and a character in the movie was named Tenley (perhaps after your mother??). Our Tenley was born in Montreal where she lived for one day before we moved home to Boston. We lived in the South End for the first two years of her life and it was always fun to have acquaintances ask her name as many would ask if it was a Tenley Albright connection. Like your mother, my husband is a surgeon and, of course, my daughter says she wants to be doctor like him, so perhaps there will be a couple Tenley surgeons!
From Alissa Driscoll:
I am the mother of Tenley Rian…My baby girl has 2 sisters Camdyn Reese and Tatym Tayla who is Tenley’s twin sister…Tenley is 14 months old and is truly a little love bug..We call her our delicate flower, because she is fragile and sensitive! She loves to play, laugh, and cuddle… I have to admit we were those parents that got our daughters name from the Bachelor! We love different names and hope that when our children go to school there will be no others with their name..When people ask about their names they ask if we named Tenley after Tenley Albright..Sometimes its is easier just to say yes..haha What an honor that is for our daughter to have such a unique name and for people to automatically think of Tenley Albright…Those shoes are pretty big shoes to fill, and we hope that our little girl dreams big and reaches for those stars! What a great idea it was to find those Tenley’s..This is our Tennie Bug!
From Tenley Toole Barnes:
I was born in 1959 so my mom held on to the name Tenley for a few years (my brother was born in 1956 but she needed a girl). Her name was Mary Jane. We are from the south so all of her friends were named-Mary Sue, Betty Jo, Mary Lou etc…. She said no one gets a double name right so she stepped out of the box and named me Tenley. Her mom and mother in law were horrified but when they saw it was a good fit everyone was happy. I love my name! When I was young I explained who I was named for and to remember it was “onely, twoly, threely fourly, fively, sixly, sevenly, eightly, ninely TENLEY..” Jodi Eck sent this picture of her daughter Tenley to our facebook page:
From Lynn Stonis, about her daughter Tenley:
My daughter’s name is Tenley! She is 10 years old, and we live in Massachusetts. I told her the story of how she got her name & she loves it. I told her the story of how I heard he name in a movie, Summer Catch, then I remembered the famous figure skater Tenley Albright, so I told my husband if “it’s” a girl her name will be Tenley. We get sooo many compliments about her name. I love different & unique names for children. Tenley also gets many compliments from her teachers, & she is a very bright little girl! She is the only Tenley that I know of in our town and she thinks that’s pretty cool. Thanks You for creating this page, you are such a great inspiration!!!! Thanks Tenley!!!!
From Tenley Sodeur, who also sent a picture!:
I have no middle name which adds to my unique personality. Not many people have the name Tenley and when people ask me where I got my name I answer “My mom was really big in to Jeopardy and when she was pregnant she happened to be watching and the category was unusual names with Tenley Albright, Olympic gold medalist making the list. From there she liked the sound of it and if she had a girl that was going to be the name. Thank God because I really did not want to be an Augustus, could you imagine the nickname Gus, no thank you! I love my name and it makes me stand out amongst the rest. I am 20 years old and attend Plymouth State University for Meteorology, I hope to one day go in to broadcasting but my true passion lies in dance and writing. I also love photography. I am really looking forward to attending the gathering this summer! Here are some: From Tenley (Ledgett) Nelson: My name is also Tenley. My parents had heard your name previous to their pregnancy with me and had noted it. When I was born at the Portsmouth Regional Hospital in 1978 the nurses all said “Oh, like Tenley Albright” and that was how my parents learned you had gone into the medical profession after skating. My parents claim I am not named after you, that they just liked the name. But regardless of the lost truth of those details, your name has accompanied mine throughout my life. Stories of you have come up in other ways as well. I have met only one other Tenley, who was in the Seacost minirays swimming in Portsmouth NH when I was quite young. When I was 18 and 19 I worked as an agricultural laborer for the Tuttles at Tuttles Red Barn in Dover NH, what used to be the oldest family farm in America until they sold it sometime over the past few years. One day I worked in the home of Mrs Joan Tuttle (I think her maiden name was DeCamp) who told me she had babysat Tenley Albright way back when. I remember seeing the TenleyTown Library in Washington DC when looking at universities in my senior year and could not believe my parents did not remember a Tenley reference considering they met in DC and my brother Chadwick was named after Chadwick’s Pub in DC. A good friend of my mother’s Lorna Perry (orginally Martin) has told me stories about skating with you in her youth. She also has a skating skirt you gave her. I clearly remember being delighted the one time I saw you on television during the Nagano Olympics, a face to go with the name. So…getting a completely random email from a stranger about this page has been delightful since I have occasionally thought about penning a letter but did not want to impose on an already public figure. Thank you and take care From Tenley Becker: Growing up, I had never appreciated my name. I always used to complain to my mom that my name was never personalized on those pencil sets you got at the craft store. It wasn’t until I had a pregnant substitute in elementary school say that after hearing my name she wanted to consider it for her own child. Now I feel lucky having such a unique name. My mom named me after Tenley Albright when she heard the name as a little girl. As she got older she fell more in love with the name and my grandma even encouraged her to name one of her daughters Tenley. When my mom told me about who Tenley Albright was and my second grade teacher showed me a book where she was mentioned in, I felt honored. Honored to be named after someone who really shows what you can make of yourself if you are willing to work for it. From Katherine Myers, mother of a young Tenley: Tenley Smith’s name originates with the subway stop/traffic circle in DC which is near where I (her mom) grew up. I had heard of Tenley Albright’s figure skating feats but after we hit upon the name I did some research and was delighted to learn of Tenley Albrights’s story of how she entered figure skating and her education and career path after winning the medal. We only hope our Tenley will be half as impressive as she grows up! From Tenley Callaghan: I was named after Tenley Albright. Funny, my maiden name was Tenley Phillips and I see there is another Tenley Phillips who has posted on this site. I grew up in New York City, but my sister’s godparents lived in Waban, Mass and brought me to meet Tenley Albright when I was a little girl. She gave me her autograph and I treasured it. Sadly, I was so proud of it that I brought it to school to show and tell and left it in my pocket when I got home. It went through the laundry and was ruined. I’m almost 50 and I can still feel that pain of losing such a treasure. When I was a bit older and wiser, I sat next to a man on my first day of classes in law school. He asked me my name and I told him, but I was quite used to people not remembering it or getting it wrong. The next he showed up to class and in his lovely voice he said, “Hi Tenley.” Needless to say, I married him. That was 25 years ago!! From Tenley Kiger: The story is pretty simple. My mom is a huge figure skating fan. My parents wanted something unique. Tenley just stood out to them and they couldn’t picture me with anything else. In a time where everyone was being named Ashley, Emma, or Rachel (no offense to those, they are beautiful names!) my parents just wanted something that was beautiful and not like everyone else. She combined her love for Tenley Albright and figure skating, and voila I got my name! From Tenley Wilson: My mom went to Wheaton College with a classmate named Tenley and just absolutely loved her name. Despite having to spell it to everyone I speak to on the phone and fielding lots of questions about it, I am so happy to have this name. I feel like it is just unique enough to be memorable without being too bizarre 🙂 Looking forward to July; I’ll likely bring my Mom along as well since she is the reason I have this name. From Tenley Phillips: Hi Tenley!!!!! I was directly named after you! My mom was at Madison Square Garden in 1974 (???) and saw you skate, with one of your daughters. It was a benefit for the US Olympic Skating Team. My mom had the honor of meeting you both and, at that moment, said to herself…”If I ever have a little girl, she will be named Tenley.” Fast forward to 1976 and voila…I am Tenley! I was looking at colleges, in Boston, in 1993 and was at dinner. We were at dinner with our friend, Dean Lord. She recognized you (may have even known you somehow). She introduced me to you. We had a brief conversation and carried on with our dinners. It was a night that I’ll never forget. I’ve always admired you, not only for your skating but how you went on to be a doctor and present yourself as such an incredible role model for women. You are simply stunning and, I hope, I will get the opportunity to meet you again soon. I think it’s so amazing that you’ve put together this website. My son, who is 5, actually has a Tenley in his class. I’ve forwarded your website to her. And oddly enough, my sister’s name is Hollace and I realized you have a Hollis. Very coincidental! Honestly, this is such a thrill for me, I can’t tell you. It’s truly an honor. I have always looked up to you and been so proud to be named after you. When people ask me who I’m named after, it is my absolute joy to tell them the story. On a side note, I did take up skating when I was little. Let’s just say…it wasn’t my sport. I can laugh at the video now! 🙂 However, I always had Olympic aspirations and found swimming to be my sport. Although I didn’t pursue it the way I should have (I stopped after my first Nationals), it was because of you that I felt like I was capable of doing anything. I just always felt like a “rock star” to be named after someone so wonderful!! Thank you so much for putting this together. I can’t tell you how excited I am. I can not wait to participate in the “Tenley Event” in July. I wouldn’t miss it for the world! Thank you Tenley, for putting this together. This is SO much fun! From Tenley Shai: I’m from Massachusetts too! A couple years ago, I did a school report and got to speak to Tenley on the phone; it was such an amazing experience. I’m 13 and I play piano, write songs, and sing. I hope to attain success, although different type, the same level as Tenley. Thanks so much for creating this website it’s so cool! I love it!