Michelle Kwan Weds White House Staffer Clay Pell

michelle kwan wed clay pell

Olympic bronze-medalists Michelle Kwan exchanged wedding vows on Saturday, Jan. 19, with Clay Pell, director for strategic planning on the National Security staff at the White House.

The bride, 32, married her Washington D.C. insider at the First Unitarian Church of Providence, R.I.

Pell, a JAG and Lieutenant in the U.S. Coast Guard, wore his full uniform for the ceremony.  His bride donned an ivory Vera Wang gown for her walk down the aisle with her father, Danny Kwan.   The designer created costumes for Michelle during her last six years of competition.

The former figure skater and her groom shared self-written vows before 240 family and friends including former Olympic champions Dorothy Hamill, Dick Button and Brian Boitano.  Pal Paula Abdul was also among the attendees.  She and Timothy Shriver, Chairman and CEO of Special Olympics, posed with the bride and groom.

paula abdul and tim shriver join newlyweds

The newly married couple shared a spontaneous kiss before the end of the ceremony.  At the appointed time the minister drew laughter when he said, "And for their second first kiss as Mr. and Mrs. Clay Pell."

While announcing her engagement in September 2012, Kwan told PEOPLE, "I never was one who believed in love at first sight, but I have to admit it happened to us.  I felt there was a magnetic connection between us.  I thought he was the one from the beginning."

Kwan was given a high profile post in December 2012 when Secretary of State Hillary Clinton named her the State Department's senior advisor for public diplomacy and public affairs.

Television and radio commentator, Christine Brennan, posted a number of candid wedding photos on her Twitter page.  She covered Michelle's Olympic journey and wrote three books on the subject of figure skating, including the best seller Inside Edge.

kiss following the ceremony

Photos:  Christine Brennan-Twitter