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by Kristina Henry

May 11, 2018

The Somerset County YMCA Masters member has spent nearly 25 years in Masters Swimming

Ed Tsuzuki doesn’t sit still.

The Somerset County YMCA Masters member somehow finds time to swim when he’s not pursuing his hobbies of scuba diving, photography, music, and cooking, after retiring from his job at Johnson & Johnson. These activities come in addition to his tireless work as a volunteer for U.S. Masters Swimming. Tsuzuki, 59, is the New Jersey LMSC Top 10 administrator and USMS’s liaison to USA Swimming.

For his contributions, Tsuzuki has been named the 2018 Capt. Ransom J. Arthur Award M.D. recipient, an award that goes annually to a volunteer who has done the most to further the objectives of Masters Swimming. The honor was announced at the 2018 Nationwide USMS Spring National Championship in Indianapolis, Ind., on Friday.

“Being nominated for and then being selected for the Ransom J. Arthur Award is truly a great honor,” Tsuzuki says. “Like all of the amazingly dedicated volunteers in USMS, we do the things we do for the organization because we care so deeply about it and because we get so much out of being a part of the organization.

“I am blessed to be part of such an active and motivated LMSC in New Jersey and to have met so many great mentors across the country. To be recognized for contributing to USMS just really puts the icing on the cake.”

A self-described late starter in swimming, Tsuzuki swam for Bridgewater-Raritan East High and Cornell University. He competed for a few years after college but took 10 years off before he started Masters Swimming in 1994.

Tsuzuki describes himself as a “spreadsheet geek,” a label that fits him well. He subscribes to “The Excel Addict” newsletter and has recorded every workout he’s done since joining Masters Swimming. He’s calculated he’s swum almost 7 million yards, or more than 4,000 miles, during that time.

After joining USMS, it was only a matter of time before he started volunteering. He attended his first annual meeting in 1999 and was the recipient of the 2012 Ted Haartz USMS Staff Appreciation Award and a recipient of the 2014 USMS Dorothy Donnelly Service Award. Tsuzuki also spent eight years on the Executive Committee of the USMS Board of Directors, serving as the vice president of administration and vice president of local operations.

Tsuzuki believes that people make time for what’s important to them and that what motivates them intrinsically enables them to find time for something. Volunteering and coaching—Tsuzuki is an age group and high school coach— are very important to him.

“My work has truly become my pleasure,” says Tsuzuki, a USMS-certified Level 3 coach. “My true passion is coaching and teaching, helping someone learn something new, helping them improve, enriching their life in a particular area, helping them achieve something they want, especially if it seems out of reach.”

Tsuzuki’s pleasure being a volunteer is apparent to those around him.

“Ed has brought not only his pure enthusiasm for USMS to the table, but also his self-professed nerdism!” writes Susan Kirk, who holds several positions within the New Jersey LMSC leadership and was a 2012 USMS Dorothy Donnelly Service Award recipient, in her letter supporting Tsuzuki’s candidacy. “Ed fully embodies the spirit, the years of dedicated USMS service, and effusive inspiration to USMS members of a candidate worth and truly deserving of the Capt. Ransom J. Arthur M.D. Award….”


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