When Barbara Jones Slater was 15, Jesse Owens visited the housing project where she lived. He inspired her to do nothing less than fulfill her dreams, and she did just that. At 15, she was the youngest woman ever to win a gold medal in track and field in the Olympics and still holds that title. That was in 1952, at the games in Helsinki, where she captured the gold and broke the world record in the 4 x 100-meter relay with her teammates. She struck gold again at the Pan American Games in 1955 and at the 1960 Rome Olympics. Today, she inspires the dreams of students at the Dekalb (Ga.) Alternative School, and she finds herself busy giving lectures on the vital role sports play in building character and self-confidence. Slater serves on the board of the Heart Association and the Martin Luther King Center. She is a member of the Paralympic Games Committee and the Atlanta Committee for the Olympic Games Youth Advisory Committee's Educational Council.