Encouraging More Adults to Swim

Doug Church Receives 2012 Ransom J. Arthur Award

No golf or fishing for this volunteer!

Nadine Day | October 9, 2012

As part of the leadership of U. S. Masters Swimming, one of the most important responsibilities is to recognize the service accomplishments of our members. Today we will be awarding our most prestigious award, the Capt. Ransom J. Arthur M.D. Award to Douglas Church.

Ransom Arthur was the founding father of U. S. Masters Swimming. His vision for promoting adult health through fitness and competition was revolutionary in 1970. He created a stage upon which adults could gather, compete, have fun and support each other in the lifelong pursuit of fitness goals through training. Today, fitness has become a normal part of everyday life for millions of adults. This was not so in 1970 when 46 athletes gathered in Amarillo, Texas for the first Masters Short Course National Championship. Forty-two years ago Ransom had a passion and a vision. Today, our 55,000 members are the result of that vision and the torchbearers of his passion.

Each year U. S. Masters Swimming recognizes one of its members who embody the dedication, leadership and passion required to carry the vision forward. It is USMS's Vision to be the premier resource for adult aquatic fitness in the United States and to make fitness through swimming available for as many adults as possible.

It is with great pleasure that U.S. Masters Swimming recognizes this year's Ransom J. Arthur Award recipient, Doug Church. Doug is a swimming advocate and is dedicated to the USMS vision and strategic plan.

Over the years Doug's contributions to US Masters Swimming have been many. On the national level, Doug has volunteered as USMS Legal Counsel, USMS Treasurer and Chair of the Finance Committee. In addition, he served as the chair of the Endowment Fund for over a decade and is the current Swimming Saves Lives Foundation Chair. He was also the co-meet director for the 1998 and 2000 USMS Short Course National Championships.

Doug has been instrumental in saving and building swimming programs. He established "Friends of Central Pool," a not for profit foundation that saved a pool from demolition. This facility, known as the Forest Park Aquatic Center now serves over 50,000 community citizens each year. He was also instrumental in developing and building the Fishers YMCA, which is the largest YMCA in Indiana. Doug was the founder and coach of Noblesville Adult Swim Team (NASTI), which, through his energy and motivation, has grown its numbers to over 150 registered USMS swimmers.

One of Doug's quotes epitomizes his dedication to USMS: "some people play golf and some people fish; I volunteer."
Doug has been a tireless volunteer for U.S. Masters Swimming as shown by these few examples and more. We are proud to give him the much-deserved recognition as this year's Ransom J. Arthur Award recipient.

Please join me in thanking Doug for his service to U.S. Masters swimming and congratulating him for being the 2012 Ransom J. Arthur Award recipient.

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