Bob Bruce Receives The 2012 USMS Dorothy Donnelly Service Award and 2013 Open Water Award
Bob Bruce has made many contributions as a member of the Oregon LMSC Board of Directors Long Distance Chair (currently) and Coaches Chair, as well as his committee work on the USMS Open Water and Long Distance Committees (currently) and past work on the Coaches and Fitness Committees.
Bob moved into the Oregon LMSC when the Masters swimming program in central Oregon was a very small group. As he assumed the aquatics position at the Juniper Aquatic Center, he worked at developing the Masters program in that community. He assisted with providing more pool time for Masters Swimming, regularly coached workouts, and increased enthusiasm for Masters Swimming. As a result, the team has grown dramatically in size and participation in Masters events.
As a coach, Bob has shared his knowledge with his own local swimmers, other Masters coaches, and Masters swimmers within the LMSC. He has willingly devoted time to swim clinics associated with meets, and provided opportunities for swimmers to attend a high-level two-day clinic. He has coached several nationally ranked swimmers and a USMS world record holder.
Bob is very active in the Oregon Long Distance/Open Water program and has been key in assisting with the development of a comprehensive schedule of events for the Oregon LMSC each summer season. He coordinates the program, revises policies, tracks equipment, and provides support and enthusiasm for each event director. His most recent goal was to bring the first cable course to the West Coast and he accomplished this at Foster Lake in Oregon. Bob’s encouragement has attracted new swimmers and new groups to enter the open water arena.
As the Oregon LMSC has increased its participation in long distance postal events, mostly due to Bob’s continued encouragement, Bob has coordinated relay entries. His contributions have contributed to Oregon making a mark on the record books.
Bob serves at many local meets as Host Coach, assisting swimmers who desire help with starts, stroke, feedback, etc. He has also served as the Oregon coach at several national championships, coordinating relays, and supporting swimmers in any way necessary.
Bob has been active at the national level for many years and has been a contributing participant in all committees on which he has served. He has provided insight and ideas on ways to make swimming beneficial and fun for all Masters swimmers.
Bob has made significant contributions to our sport and is a deserving recipient of this service award.
Bob Bruce Receives inaugural 2013 Open Water Service Award
September 13, 2013
The U.S. Masters Swimming Open Water Service Award honors individuals who have made significant contributions to promoting and building excellence in USMS open water swimming.
This year’s honoree has excelled at the club, LMSC, Zone, and national level. In doing so, this individual has worn many “hats”, as a major developer, founder, organizer, and promoter of open water in the roles of event director, safety director, referee, coach, mentor, clinic instructor, administrator, and swimmer.
Here are some examples:
Locally (Club & LMSC levels):
- Directed or overseen 62 open water events (192 swims) at 5 different Oregon LMSC venues, without any reportable safety incidents. Since 2001, Oregon’s open water splashes have doubled to about 1150.
- Founded and directed 2 annual events at Foster Lake in 2005 and Lake Juniper in 2012, resurrected an event at Eel Lake in 2002, safety or event director for events at Elk Lake since 1996, and oversaw operations at Applegate Lake in 2012.
- Served as the event Referee for events that he directs and for other events.
- Oversees scoring and awards for the annual Oregon LMSC open water swim series.
- Notably, is the course developer and builder of the Foster Lake Cable course –- the only fixed cable swim course west of Indiana. A major 2-year project that required diligent efforts to work through the regulatory and permitting processes.
- Serves as Coach of Central Oregon Masters Aquatics open water team, where membership has grown from 15 to 250 over the last 15-years. Open water participation is significant. They are multi-year Oregon team champions.
- Linked participation in USMS postal swims to participation in open water events.
- Continues to conduct 2 or 3 Open Water clinics per year (since 2002).
- Introduced the sanctioning of FUN open water style pool swim events in 2012.
- Introduced the popular “Swim With Your Dog” FUN swims in 2002 that continues to be conducted in tandem with sanctioned open water events.
- Chairs the Oregon LMSC long distance committee and sanctions since 2001.
- Since 2001, writes monthly long distance column for the Oregon LMSC newsletter.
- Proposed and hosted the first Northwest Zone open water championships in 2003.
- Directed 6 USMS open water national championships and mentored other event directors on how to organize and safely conduct these events.
- Actively served on the USMS Long Distance Committee since 2003 and USMS Open Water Committee since 2011, and is well known for leading, organizing and extensively updating the open water rules in the last several years – “a giant job”.
As a Swimmer:
- Avid and enthusiastic open water swimmer, motivator and cheerleader.
- USMS Long Distance All Star 2007, 2009, and 2010.
Excerpts from Nomination Supporters:
- “He is the driving force behind Oregon’s open water swimming program. He has been the meet director for the Cascade Lakes Swim Festival for as long as I can remember. He organized the establishment of a permanent open water race course in Foster Lake with a fixed course and touchpad timing, unique in open water swimming. He is a dedicated coach, both for pool and open water swimming. He is a cheerleader, encouraging not only his local team swimmers to participate in open water swimming (and long distance postal swims) but swimmers from all over the State to participate. …. Oregon would not have the successful program we now have without his steady driving, encouraging hand.”
- “His excitement and love for open water events was and continues to be contagious. Whenever he has wanted to expand the open water program he thoroughly explores the possibilities and figures out ways to address the obstacles. He has been innovative in expanding our open water season to include nine open water events in a typical season—a stellar accomplishment in a cool and short summer weather state like Oregon. His vision to create the first cable swim west of Indiana became a reality due to his vision and persistence. The Oregon Board has been thoroughly supportive, because he always comes to the board meetings very well prepared with details from his research of what it would take to make an event or activity successful and a positive experience for everyone.”
These examples demonstrate extraordinary achievement and impact, and how the honoree lives the USMS mission, vision, goals & objectives through open water swimming.
The recipient of the inaugural 2013 Open Water Service Award is Bob Bruce from Central Oregon Masters Aquatics.