John Misha Petkevich

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
John Misha Petkevich
Personal information
Full name John Misha Petkevich
Country represented United States
Born (1949-03-03) March 3, 1949 (age 68)
Height 174 cm (5.71 ft)
Former coach Arthur Bourke
Gustave Lussi
Skating club Great Falls FSC

John Misha Petkevich (born March 3, 1949 in Minneapolis) is an American former figure skater. He is the 1971 U.S. national champion and North American champion. He placed 6th at the 1968 Winter Olympics and 5th at the 1972 Winter Olympics. His best finish at the World Championships was 4th in 1972; he placed 5th in 1969, 1970, and 1971.[1] In 1972, he won the gold medal at the World University Games.

Petkevich was coached by Arthur Bourke[2] and Gustave Lussi. He was known as a particularly dynamic free skater for his time.[3][4][5] His emphasis on freer musical expression and less rigid body lines set him apart from most other men's singles competitors of his era.[6] He has also been credited with innovating fashion for male competitors by wearing a more athletic costume of a jumpsuit and turtleneck sweater rather than the more formal suit-and-tie outfit that was otherwise universal in the 1960s. By the early 1970s, many other skaters had emulated Petkevich's costume style.[7][8]

In 1970, while a student at Harvard University, Petkevich founded An Evening with Champions, a long-running annual ice show that raises money to benefit the Jimmy Fund and Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.[9]

Petkevich was the recipient of an unusual trophy. At the 1947 World Figure Skating Championships, Ulrich Salchow was particularly impressed by Dick Button's skating, and gave him one of his own trophies. Following the 1972 Olympics, Button passed on Salchow's trophy to Petkevich. In 2010, Petkevich passed the trophy to Paul Wylie, keeping alive the meaning of the trophy which is meant to reward a skater for having had a material impact on the sport.

Following his competitive career, Petkevich attended University of Oxford as a Rhodes scholar, earning a Ph.D. in cell biology in 1978. He subsequently studied music privately, was a Fellow in the Music Department at Harvard, and was composer-in-residence at Eliot House, Harvard. In 1983, he joined Hambrecht & Quist as a securities analyst following the biotechnology industry. From 1987 to 1989, he pursued healthcare investment banking. In 1989, he joined Robertson Stephens & Co. as Managing Director and served several roles including Head of Healthcare Banking and Head of Investment Banking. In 2008, he founded The Petkevich Group, a boutique advisory firm where he was Chairman and CEO from 1998 to 2005. In 2006, He co-founded along with Dennis McCoy, MD, BladeRock Capital, the General Partner of the V2MTM Life Sciences Fund. The Fund makes contrarian investments in undervalued public companies, which are developing medical breakthrough products that address large, unmet medical needs.

Petkevich is the author of Figure Skating: Championship Techniques (ISBN 0-452-26209-7), one of the standard reference works on figure skating technique. He has also served as a figure skating analyst for NBC, CBS, and ESPN. Petkevich has also composed a Clarinet Quintet, a Piano Trio, A Sonata for Piano and a number of songs in different genre. Most have the compositions have been played in small concerts.


Event 1965 1966 1967 1968 1969 1970 1971 1972
Winter Olympics 6th 5th
World Championships 5th 5th 5th 4th
North American Championships 3rd 1st
U.S. Championships 5th J. 4th 3rd 2nd 2nd 1st 2nd


  1. ^ "John Misha Petkevich". Olympic Sports. Sports Reference LLC. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  2. ^ Ottum, Bob (January 29, 1968). "Bold Bourkey For John Misha". Sports Illustrated. 
  3. ^ USFSA, The Official Book of Figure Skating, ISBN 0-684-84673-X
  4. ^ Toller Cranston, When Hell Freezes Over, ISBN 0-7710-2336-7
  5. ^ "Wood Attributes Rise to Hard Work, Maturity", The Owosso Argus-Press, Feb 17 1968
  6. ^ "An Interview with Petkevich", Skating magazine, May 1971
  7. ^ "Nationals", Skating magazine, April 1971
  8. ^ "John Misha Petkevich". Montana Kids. Montana Office of Tourism. Retrieved August 4, 2011. 
  9. ^ An Evening with Champions web site