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September 15, 2019

Award recipients were announced Saturday at the annual meeting at the USAS Convention

U.S. Masters Swimming has concluded its 2019 annual meeting during the United States Aquatic Sports Convention in St. Louis. In addition to committee meetings and rules and legislation reviews, USMS held officer elections and honored many of its deserving volunteers with service awards.

USMS is pleased to announce that the following officers were re-elected or elected: Peter Guadagni (president), Chris Colburn (vice president of administration), Chris Campbell (vice president of community services), Ed Coates (vice president of local operations), Donn Livoni (vice president of programs), Greg Danner (secretary), and Teddy Decker (treasurer).

The Capt. Ransom J. Arthur M.D. Award is given annually to the volunteer who epitomizes the spirit of Capt. Ransom J. Arthur, the founding father of U.S. Masters Swimming. In 1970, Capt. Arthur envisioned lifelong fitness and lifestyle benefits for adults through aquatic training and competition. Each year, the recipient of the Ransom J. Arthur award has demonstrated top-tier commitment and dedication to the mission of USMS. This year’s recipient was Jeff Roddin (Potomac Valley).

U.S. Masters Swimming honors volunteers whose service stands out in scope and impact with the U.S. Masters Swimming Dorothy Donnelly Service Award. Recipients of this award have made significant contributions on the local, regional, and national level. The award is named after Dorothy Donnelly, one of USMS’s first super-volunteers. This year, the recipients are Mike Abegg (Pacific), Nicole Chistensen (Gulf), Philipp Djang (Florida Gulf Coast), Bob Eberwine (Southern Pacific), Rob Heath (Pacific), Richard Garza (North Texas), Christina Kowamoto (New Mexico), Clare Kubiak (Pacific), Crystie McGrail (New England), Melodee Nugent (Wisconsin), Pete Palmer (South Carolina), Teddy Palmer (Pacific), and Bob Welchin (Missouri Valley).

The U.S. Masters Swimming June Krauser Communications Award is presented annually to an individual or group whose communications efforts have contributed to the growth, improvement, or success of U.S. Masters Swimming. The award is named for June Krauser, the author of USMS’s first official rulebook and a prolific writer and editor of many newsletters and other publications in the Masters swimming world. This year’s recipient is Alana Aubin (New England).

U.S. Masters Swimming considers club development a priority, and recognizes a local and a regional club every year with the U.S. Masters Swimming Club of the Year Award. Masters swim clubs that do the most to promote the values and mission of U.S. Masters Swimming, not only in their communities, but also at the national level, are candidates for this award. This year’s Local Club of the Year is Texas Ford Aquatics Masters (North Texas).

The U.S. Masters Swimming Coaches Committee recognizes coaches who are building our membership in communities throughout the country. The U.S. Masters Swimming Kerry O’Brien Coaches Award is named to honor Coach Kerry O'Brien of Walnut Creek Masters, who embodies the passion, dedication, and heart that these coaches bring to the pool deck. This year’s recipients are Elise Shank (Fort Bragg Masters), Eric Neilsen (FAST Masters), James Torres (Competitive Tri-Swim Masters), Mark Stori (Santa Barbara Masters), and Shea Manning (West Hollywood Aquatics).

The USMS Fitness Committee annually presents the U.S. Masters Swimming Fitness Award to recognize outstanding achievement in fitness activities within USMS and is presented to individuals or organizations demonstrating outstanding contribution to fitness activities benefitting USMS members. This year's award recipient is Bill Meier (New England).

The Championship Committee and Raleigh Area Masters select an individual each year who makes significant contributions to USMS National Championship meets for its U.S. Masters Swimming National Championship Meets Award. The award recognizes efforts to assist USMS and meet hosts in providing excellent competitive conditions for championship racing or otherwise contributing to the success of USMS National Championships or national championship-level competitions, including international meets. This year’s recipients are Omar and Alina de Armas (Southern Pacific).

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 by embodying the USMS mission, vision, goals, and objectives through open water swimming; contributing notably, such as serving in USMS national committees, LMSC open water or long distance chair, event or safety director, official, coach, clinician, or volunteer); contributes notably at different levels of USMS (i.e. national, zone, LMSC, and/or local); or demonstrates extraordinary measurable achievement and impact. This year’s award goes to Joel Wilson (Pacific).

The U.S. Masters Swimming Officials Excellence Award is given annually to a Certified Official in recognition of outstanding and significant contributions to U.S. Masters Swimming at the international, national, zone, and/or local level, including pool and open water competitions. The recipient isn’t required to be a U.S. Masters Swimming member. An individual may receive this award only once. The recipient may be a currently active official or one who has retired from officiating or is deceased. This year’s award recipient is Ed Saltzman (Georgia).

The Long Distance National Championship Award is presented annually to a USMS registered individual or group who has made significant contributions to the success and promotion of USMS Long Distance National Championship events. These events include five ePostals and six open water events. This year's recipient is Bob Bruce (Oregon).

Each year USMS honors a coach who exemplifies the highest standards in Masters coaching, including growth and development of Masters swimming with an all-inclusive approach, one that welcomes swimmers of all levels and abilities. This year’s U.S. Masters Swimming Coach of the Year is Richard Garza (North Texas).

Lastly, the Ted Haartz U.S. Masters Swimming Staff Appreciation Award is named in honor of Ted Haartz, a leader in U.S. Masters Swimming since 1970. Ted helped establish the foundation for USMS’s evolution into a professionally-operated organization. The award celebrates our volunteer roots, as well as our future, specifically by recognizing one volunteer each year who demonstrates excellence in assisting and supporting the National Office staff with its professional duties of serving our members and promoting Masters Swimming. This year’s recipient is the Volunteers Task Force: Laura Winslow (Arizona), C.J. Rushman (Kentucky), Chris McGiffin (New Jersey), Jeff Strahota (Potomac Valley), Maria Elias-Williams (South Carolina), Clare Kubiak (Pacific), Tom Moore (Minnesota), Blair Bagley (Utah), and Bruce Rollins (Gulf).


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