Sunday, March 29, 2015

Legendary Marathon Swimmer David Yudovin Passes Away

Fort Lauderdale - The international open water swimming community received a shock today when word came that David Yudovin passed away on March 28th, of an apparent heart attack during a workout on a treadmill at his home in Cambria, Calif. He was 64 years old.

David was one of the most remarkable solo open water swimmers in history and was enshrined into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in September of 2014.  

“David’s achievements in the water speak for themselves,” said Bruce Wigo, ISHOF’s President/CEO.  “But David was not only a remarkable athlete, he was a remarkable person who will be missed by all of us at the ISHOF and the entire swimming community.”

Shortly after returning from his enshrinement ceremony last September, David called Bruce Wigo.  A successful businessman who recently retired, he asked the Hall’s president if there was anything he could to assist the Hall. Since David’s interest was marathon swimming, Wigo suggested he get involved in the administration of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame (IMSHOF), an organization founded in 1963 and long administered through the ISHOF.  David and his wife Beth dove into the task with the same enthusiasm and professionalism as they approached David’s swims.  They presented a plan of action to the IMSHOF’s Board and soon found themselves appointed to the top leadership position and set out to revamp the entire organization.  They developed new selection criteria and policies, organized the 2015 IMSHOF induction ceremony and created a new website for the organization- all while planning David’s next swim.  

“His passing leaves so much at both halls of fame in a state of flux,” says Wigo, “for David’s energy, enthusiasm, leadership skills and personality are truly irreplaceable in one person.  For now our thoughts are with Beth and David’s family and many friends around the world and we look forward to preserving his legacy and continuing what he has started.” 

A memorial service will be held at 3pm on Friday, April 3rd, 2015 at Leffingwell Landing, Moonstone Beach, Cambria.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to David’s three favorite charities:

The Cambria Community Council (to Maintain and operate the Cambria Community Bus)

Contact Janet Brewster: 1.805.927.4173

Thursday, March 26, 2015


FORT LAUDERDALE - The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) today announced finalized results of the International Selection Committee’s recommendations as approved by the Board of Directors for the Class of 2015.  The 51st Annual Hall of Fame Enshrinement ceremonies will be held in Santa Clara, California, on Saturday evening, June 20, 2015.  For more information about the event and to purchase tickets, visit, or call 954-462-6536.
 “I am very pleased to announce the results of this year’s voting,” said Camillo Cametti, of Verona, Italy, Chairman of ISHOF’s International Selection Committee. “This year’s class of 12 athletes, coaches and contributors represents four aquatic disciplines (swimming, diving, swimming and water polo) from nine different nations. It is a very distinguished group of individuals who well represent FINA and the world of the Olympic aquatic sports.”  
The Class of 2015 includes swimmers Enith Brigitha (NED), Jodie Henry (AUS) and Diana Macanu (ROM); Diver Lao Lishi (CHN); Synchronized Swimmer Anastaysia Ermakova (RUS); Water Polo Player/Coach Ivo Trumbic (CRO/YUG/NED); Coaches James Gaughran (USA), Don Watson (USA) and Masako Kaneko (JPN); Contributor Bartolo Consolo (ITA); Pioneer Liang Boxi (CHN), and Masters Swimmer Karlyn Pipes (USA). 
Enith Brigitha (NED)
Born on the island of Curacao, in the Caribbean, Enith Brigitha enjoyed nearly a full decade in swimming as a bona fide star. During her heyday, she set 97 Dutch National Records and won 11 individual medals in the Olympics, World and European Championships, in an era mostly dominated by swimmers from the German Democratic Republic. She was twice named Dutch Sportswoman of the year and has the distinction of being the first person of African descent to win Olympic swimming medals.

JoDie Henry (AUS)
At the 2004 Olympics, Henry anchored the Australian women s 4x100m freestyle relay team that won the gold in world record time. She then broke the 100m individual freestyle world record time in the semifinals and went on to win the gold medal for the event, the first Australian to do so since Dawn Fraser 40 years earlier.

Diana Mocanu (ROM)
Training six hours a day in Romania, Diana Mocanu progressed from European Junior Championt to double Olympic gold medalist in the 100m and 200m backstroke at the 2000 Sydney Olympics. She also won the 200m backstroke and took second to rising star Natalie Coughlin in the 100m at the 2001 FINA World Aquatics Championships.

Lao Lishi (CHN)
Lao Lishi, born December 12,1987 in Zhanjiang, Guangdong is a female diver from the People s Republic of China. Lao represented China at the 2004 Summer Olympics, earning a silver medal in the 10 meter women s platform and a gold medal in women s 10 meter synchronized platform along with Li Ting.  An entrepreneur today, she recently rang the bell at the NY Stock Exchange when the firm Alibaba went public.

Synchronized Swimmer:
Anastasyia Ermakova is a four-time Olympic champion, winning four gold medals in duet and team events at the 2004 and 2008 Olympic Games.  She is one of the most decorated synchronized swimmers in history with a combined twelve gold and two silver medals in major international competition from 2003 to 2010.

Water Polo
One of the legendary names in the sport of Water Polo, Ivo Trumbic was Born in Split, Croatia. He played water polo for the Yugoslavian National Team winning the silver medal at the 1964 Olympic Games in Tokyo and improving to the gold medal at 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico City. Eight years later he coached the team from Holland to a bronze medal.

As the head swimming coach at Stanford University, from 1960 to 1980, Jim Gaughran trained 26 Olympic swimmers who won eight gold, two silver and five bronze medals.  This number might have been much higher but for the American boycott of the 1980 Moscow Olympic Games.  Perhaps of greater historical significance was his role as head of the delegation for the first American team to visit China in 1973 – which helped pave the way for normalization of relations between the two nations and the re-entry of China into FINA family and the Olympic movement.

An assistant coach to the legendary Doc Cousilman, Don Watson became one of the most successful high-school swimming coaches in history, producing swimmers who earned 167 High school All-America,  4 Olympic medals and multiple world professional marathon swimming titles. Watson was voted Coach of the Year by the American Swimming Coaches Association in 1970 and served as USA Team coach or manager at six major international competitions.  For 24 years, Don was the Director of the University of Texas Swimming Stadium and the Longhorn Aquatic Swim Club, where he collaborated with Hall of Fame coaches Eddie Reese, Paul Bergen, Richard Quick and Mark Schubert.  He joins three of his swimmers, John Kinsella, Sandra Bucha and Gold Medallion recipient Bob Dudley in the Hall of Fame. 

Masako Kaneka has been the driving force in developing and maintaining Japan’s synchronized swimming prominence in the world. From 1982, when she was the National Team Coach and Director for Japan. to the present, she has coached or been team leader of almost every competition in which Japan has competed. She coached swimmers to medals in every Olympic Games from 1984 (synchro’s first Olympics) to 2004 and had medal winners in every World Championships from 1978 to 2007. Her 40 years coaching in Japan have earned her many awards including the Women’s Sports Order from the International Olympic Committee.

Bartolo Consolo s career in swimming and water polo has been outstanding beginning as a young swimmer and water polo player, advancing to the leader of his hometown clubs Rani Nantes Perugia and Club AS Roma and to a leader of International significance. In 1990, he was elected President of LEN and two years later Vice President of FINA. He was elected to four terms as LEN President and is now LEN Honorary President for Life. He served two terms as FINA Honorary Secretary from 2000 to 2009 and continues today as immediate past Honorary Secretary of FINA. Among his awards include Golden Stars for Sport, Italian Republic Official Knights, Knight of Malta and Knight of Mauritian Order.

Liang Boxi is considered the Father of Diving in China. Born in Guangdong in 1938, he practiced gymnastics, track, swimming and diving as a youngster and won the first National Diving championships (1955) in the 3m springboard followed in 1957 by the 10m platform and 3m springboard event. At the 1963 Indonesia Games, Boxi won from a total of 15 other nations. However, in 1966, the Chinese government put a halt to all competitive sports. In 1972, Boxi led a revival of the diving program that has developed into the top diving nation in the world today.  

At age of 32, Karlyn began setting FINA Masters World Records on a steady basis and now, in the 50-54 age group, she has set 203 of them in the backstroke, freestyle, butterfly and Individual Medley. She has established number one rankings than any other Masters swimmer, male or female. She competed at the 1994, 2006, 2008 and 2012 FINA Masters World Championships winning all fifteen events she entered. Aside from competing, she is most proud of using her Red Cross Lifeguard/CPR instructor training to earn the ARC’s medal and Certificate of Merit for saving the life of a drowning person.

About the ISHOF
The International Swimming Hall of Fame & Museum was established in 1965 as a not-for-profit educational organization in the City of Fort Lauderdale, Florida and was recognized by FINA, the international governing body for the Olympic aquatic sports, in 1968. The Mission of ISHOF is to PRESERVE and CELEBRATE aquatic history, to EDUCATE the general public about the importance of swimming as the key to water safety, drowning prevention, better health and a better quality of life, and to INSPIRE everyone to swim. ISHOF’s collection of swimming memorabilia, art, photos and films, along with archival documents and rare books in the Henning Library, make ISHOF the premier repository and academic research resource for swimming and aquatic history in the world.

For more information contact Bruce Wigo at 954-462-6536 ext. 201, or email

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


Presented by "Every Child A Swimmer" - a Project of Kiwanis International

Fort Lauderdale – The Awards and Recognition Committee of the International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) is pleased to announce that Johnny and Cindy Johnson, of Tustin, Calif., are the recipients of the 2015 G. Harold Martin Award, for long and exceptional leadership, insight and dedication to the water safety of children and the cause of making Every Child A Swimmer.

The Award will be presented to the Johnsons in conjunction with ISHOF’s 51st Annual Honoree Weekend, on Friday, June 19th, in Santa Clara, California.

"Santa Clara has a great swimming tradition and we are proud to support the relocation of the International Swimming Hall of Fame by sponsoring this award,” said Jim Martin, President of the Every Child A Swimmer (ECAS) organization.

"Johnny  and Cindy Johnson are true dynamos when it comes to the cause drowning prevention and learn-to-swim education" , said Bruce Wigo, ISHOFs President/CEO. "We are honored to have them accept this award in the spirit of G. Harold Martin, and we are grateful for the support of ECAS for making this award possible."

Johnny and Cindy Johnson are owners of Blue Buoy Swim School in Tustin, California. It is one of the California’s oldest private swim schools and many of their students have achieved elite status in competitive swimming and water polo, including seven who have competed in the Olympics or set World Records.

Johnny is a charter member and past president of the US Swim School Association and co-author of its Infant Toddler course that has been adopted by thousands of instructors worldwide. Johnny & Cindy have been invited to speak on Blue Buoy’s unique philosophy and teaching methodology in Australia, New Zealand, Sweden, Canada, Mexico, and throughout the United States.

Always concerned with water safety, Cindy and Johnny founded the Swim for Life Foundation (SFL) in 2004 and created the Safer 3 Drowning Prevention program. The Safer 3 message is being used throughout the U.S and gaining international recognition.The Safer 3 Early Education Drowning Prevention Program curriculum is being taught in schools districts & preschools across the nation. Both are on the Board of Directors of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA). Johnny is a past president of NDPA and President of the SFL Foundation.

Cindy is currently treasurer of both organizations, as well as Blue Buoy Swim School. 

About G. Harold Martin: Back in 1908, G. Harold Martin almost drowned in the Ohio River. Over the next two decades he almost drowned two more times. From these experiences evolved a mission to make "Every Child A Swimmer." His civic involvement led to the building of Fort Lauderdale, Florida’s first municipal pool in 1927, Kiwanian sponsored free swim lessons at the pool and eventually the decision by ISHOF to locate in Fort Lauderdale. An active Kiwanian his entire adult life, he was instrumental in making the Key Club an integral Club within Kiwanis International and the adoption of Every Child A Swimmer as a Kiwanian Project. 
More About Every Child A Swimmer:

About ISHOF: The International Hall of Fame, founded in 1965, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is a not-for-profit educational organization located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Its mission is to inspire everyone to be a swimmer by promoting the benefits and importance of swimming as a key to fitness, good health, quality of life, and the water safety of all adults and children. For more information about ISHOF, see  For tickets or more information, call 954-462-6536

For immediate release: DR. SAM BRITTEN TO RECEIVE ISHOF’S John K. Williams, Jr. International Adapted Aquatics Award

 Presented by S.R.Smith

Fort Lauderdale - The Adapted Aquatics Committee of the International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) is pleased to announce that Dr. Sam Britten, will receive the 2015 the John K. Williams Jr. International Adapted Aquatics Award. The Award, presented by S.R. Smith, a world-leading manufacturer of commercial and residential swimming pool deck equipment headquartered in Canby, Oregon, will be given to Dr. Britten in conjunction with ISHOF’s 51st Annual Honoree Weekend, on Friday, June 19th, in Santa Clara, Calif. “S.R.Smith has been a leader in making the water accessible to everyone for over 80 years," said Bruce Wigo, ISHOF President/CEO, "and we are grateful for the support of S.R.Smith for making this award possible."
"S.R.Smith is honored to recognize the lifelong contributions of Dr. Sam Britten, for his outstanding work and commitment to the aquatic health of persons with disabilities with this award, " said  Dan Jorgensen, an Olympic gold medal winning swimmer and vice president of sales at S.R. Smith.

Dr. Sam Britten is internationally respected in his field and is one of the most beloved individuals to have ever set foot on the Cal State Northridge campus, where he taught at for 44 years (1959-2003). He earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from UCLA and then earned his doctorate at USC where he specialized in rehabilitation training and therapy. He realized his calling at UCLA when he was asked to take a group of blind students to Mexico for spring break.

As a kinesiology professor, Britten created a rehabilitation and physical education center on campus in 1959, where he worked with injured athletes as the head trainer and worked extensively with disabled veterans from the Korean War after they had returned from service. The center grew in scope and by the 1980's the Center of Achievement for the Physically Disabled had been established and had begun to earn a national reputation. In 2003, with Dr. Britten’s help, the university opened a new $6 million aquatic therapy center for the chronically challenged that is unrivaled in the United States. After retiring from the university, Dr. Britten founded Western Independent Living Foundation, Inc.

About S.R.Smith: Since 1932, S.R.Smith has been a world leading manufacturer of commercial and residential swimming pool deck equipment. The company’s products are featured on some of the finest pools in the world. S.R.Smith’s comprehensive lie of ADA compliant pool lifts provides disabled people safe access to aquatic activities. S.R.Smith is headquartered in Canby, OR with additional manufacturing in Portland, TN.
For more information, visit: or

About the J John K. Williams, Jr. International Adapted Aquatics Award: Established in 1994 by ISHOF’s Adaptive Aquatics Committee, this award honors an individual who has made significant and substantial contributions to the field of adaptive aquatics (aquatics for persons with physical disabilities) as a participant, athlete, teacher, instructor, coach, organizer, administrator or media representative. For more information about the award:,-jr.-international-adapted-aquatics-award.html

About ISHOF: The International Hall of Fame, founded in 1965, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is a not-for-profit educational organization. Its mission is to inspire everyone to be a swimmer by promoting the benefits and importance of swimming as a key to fitness, good health, quality of life, and the water safety of all adults and children. For more information about ISHOF, see For tickets or more information, call 954-462-6536

For immediate release: ISHOF ANNOUNCES 2015 BUCK DAWSON AUTHOR’S AWARD RECIPIENTS: Jeff Farrell, Sheila Taormina & Barb Rosenstock

Fort Lauderdale - The Awards and Recognition Committee of the International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2015 Buck Dawson Author’s Awards: For Non-Fiction category - Jeff Farrell, My Olympic Story: Rome 1960. For Technical works - Sheila Taormina, Swim Speed Strokes for Swimmers and Triathletes. In the Children’s category - Barb Rosenstock, Ben Franklin’s Big Splash - the mostly true story of his first invention.

This award is presented by ISHOF in the name of William "Buck" Dawson, ISHOF’s founding Executive Director, to authors of works that positively promote and educate people about swimming.

Dawson was a veteran of WWII who served as assistant and publicist for Generals Gavin and Ridgeway in the 82nd Airborne. From the time he was chosen to lead ISHOF in 1962, until his death in 2008, Buck traveled around the world armed with Hall of Fame brochures, books and bumper stickers always spreading the word, always willing to talk and teach swimming and swimming history to anyone who would listen. He wrote hundreds of articles and was the author of eight books, ranging in subjects from Bathing Beauties to war, but especially swimming. The Awards will be presented to the recipients in conjunction with ISHOF’s 51st Annual Honoree Weekend, on Friday, June 19th, in Santa Clara, Calif.

Jeff Farrell - My Olympic Story: Rome 1960
"In the long history of American Olympic swimming glory", wrote the legendary Olympic filmmaker, Bud Greenspan, " there is one little known story that stands out above the rest for courage and the ability to endure. "That story belongs to Jeff Farrell, and it’s the story Jeff tells himself, for the first time, in his well-written debut book, My Olympic Story: Rome 1960. But is more than a telling of the events featured in Greenspan’s documentary film, it is the story of an era in swimming that the pinnacle of modern competitive swimming stands upon. It is as much about the coaches, competitors and state of swimming in the 1950’s as it is about "six days" before the 1960 Olympic Trials and Olympic Games that made Jeff a national hero and icon of sportsmanship. It is a compelling story that’s an easy, fun and compelling read. 

Sheila Taormina - Swim Speed Strokes for Swimmers and Triathletes
Sheila Taormina has competed in four Olympic games and is the only woman in the world to have competed in three different sports on the Olympic stage - swimming, triathlon, and modern pentathlon. She is a coach, motivational speaker and dynamo inside her 5’2" body. She’s also a best selling author, with Swim Speed Strokes for Swimmers and Triathletes being the third of her best-selling “Swim Speed" series. By combining crystal-clear photographs of some of the world’s best swimmers with an engaging, straightforward writing style, Sheila demystifies the science behind power and speed in the water, the elements common to every stroke, and stroke techniques and enhances the learning process whether training with or without a coach.

Barb Rosenstock, Ben Franklin’s Big Splash - the mostly true story of his first invention.
One of ISHOF’s most popular exhibits is on the history of hand paddles, which can be traced to a 1773 letter from ISHOF Hall of Famer, Benjamin Franklin, to an acquaintance in France, wherein Franklin Franklin describes what is believed to be his first invention at the age of 11. “Before the world knew the famous Doctor Benjamin Franklin,” writes Barb Rosenstock, “his neighbors knew him as Ben, the sturdy, saucy, smelly son of a soap maker… who loved to swim.” Rosenstock sets just the right playful and rather silly tone with this biographical picture book. While having Ben swimming on almost every page, she includes plenty of details about the society in the 1700s and how it was different from our modern one. Using different fonts and repeating words, she also emphasizes the importance of trial and error in science and solving problems. She also ties in the fact that this is how science works and how scientists learn things, along with a healthy dose of dedication and resolve.
The illustrations by S.D. Schindler are marvelous, cleverly covering up the more private parts of the naked swimming boy with splashes and waves. They have a light-hearted quality to them and also a visual lightness that makes the book even funnier as they swim across the page.

Copies of all three books will be available for sale all during the weekend.

About ISHOF: The International Hall of Fame, founded in 1965, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is a not-for-profit educational organization located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Its mission is to inspire everyone to be a swimmer by promoting the benefits and importance of swimming as a key to fitness, good health, quality of life, and the water safety of all adults and children. For more information about ISHOF, see For tickets or more information, call 954-462-6536


Presented by Pentair Aquatic Systems

Fort Lauderdale - Sponsored by Pentair Aquatic Systems, the International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) announced today the recipients of the 2015 Paragon Awards. The Paragon Awards are presented annually to individuals or organizations for outstanding contributions to: Competitive Swimming, Water Polo, Competitive Diving, Aquatic Safety, Synchronized Swimming and Recreational Swimming. This year’s awards will be presented on Friday, June 20, 2015, at a ceremony in Santa Clara, Calif., USA.

“Pentair is honored to be associated with the International Swimming Hall of Fame and to recognize leaders in the aquatic industry who play a prominent role in the promotion of swimming”, said Jim Drozdowski, Institutional Aquatics Sales Manager for Pentair Aquatic Systems. 

“The annual Paragon Awards bring some of the most interesting and fascinating people each year to the Hall of Fame” said ISHOF President/CEO Bruce Wigo. 

“These are the unsung heroes who make competitive and recreational aquatics possible, who save lives, who promote water safety and further aquatic education.” The Paragon Awards are part of ISHOF’s 51st Annual Hall of Fame Honoree Weekend,

June 19-21, which will be held in Santa Clara, Calif. for the first time. For ticket information visit or call 954-462-6536.

This year’s Paragon Award recipients and their categories are:

Julie O’Neill began her Paralympic coaching career in New York, prior to joining the USOC’s fledgling Paralympics swimming division, where she coached Erin Popovich to 19 career Paralympic medals, including 14 gold and 5 silver. She was a member of the 200, 2004 and 2008 USA Paralympic coaching staffs and currently serves as Team Leader of the USOC Paralympic Sport Performance Division, over seeing all Paralympic NGB programs.

Jim Stillson has served as head men’s and women’s diving coach at Southern Methodist University for over thirty years. His divers have earned 87 All-American honors and have won 31 combined conference championships. He has also coached 10 USA Diving National Champions and four Olympians, including 1992 Silver Medalist Scott Donie.

Mary Ann Reeves has been a key player in the development of synchronized swimming both in Canada and internationally. Her work in synchronized swimming became a model in the Canadian sport system for developing coach education programs for all sports in her country and she became the first woman to take on a coach education leadership role in Canada when she became the director of the National Coaching Institute in Calgary.

Dan Sharadin has been the Executive Director of the Collegiate Water Polo Association (CWPA) since 1990. In the mid 1990’s Dan worked with United States Water Polo for the purpose of collegiate development and is primarily responsible for the addition and growth of women’s water polo as an NCAA sport and for saving many men’s NCAA water polo programs. Today over 80% of all collegiate contests are played under the auspices of the CWPA.

While serving as the Aquatics Director for the City of La Mirada, Calif., Lori Thompson oversaw the high successful opening and programming of the Spash! La Mirada Aquatic Center. Rather than lose money, like most publicly operated pools, Lori’s facility generates six figure positive cash flow for the city while providing diverse recreational and competitive programs for all residents. The City of La Mirada has been named a “Best Place to Live" by CNN MONEY Magazine, with the aquatic center named as one of the reasons for the honor, and Lori now serves on the City’s Executive Staff as Community Services Director.

As the Aquatics Sub-Council Chair on the American Red Cross Scientific Advisory Council and Medical Advisor to the United States Lifesaving Association (USLA), Dr. Peter Wernicki is a global leader in water safety and drowning prevention. Under his leadership, the Red Cross and USLA have helped to educate literally millions of people about basic swimming safety knowledge and skills need to help people be safe in and around the water.

About Pentair Aquatic Systems: Pentair Aquatic Systems is a world-wide leader in the manufacture of residential and commercial swimming pool equipment, including Paragon Deck Equipment out of its LaGrangeville, NY facility. Paragon deck equipment, including competitive starting platforms, has been a leader in innovation, design and manufacturing for over 50 years, and is a proud sponsor of the ISHOF “Paragon Awards” since 1996. For more information about the Paragon Awards, see:

About ISHOF: The International Hall of Fame, founded in 1965, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is a not-for-profit educational organization located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Its mission is to inspire everyone to be a swimmer by promoting the benefits and importance of swimming as a key to fitness, good health, quality of life, and the water safety of all adults and children. For more information about ISHOF, see For tickets or more information, call 954-462-6536 For more information about the Paragon Awards, see:

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Kim Welshons Obituary

Kim Welshons ObituaryKim Welshons
Carlsbad, California
Kim Welshons of Carlsbad California passed away March 5, 2015 in her home surrounded by her family and friends after a short battle with pancreatic cancer. Kim is survived by her Mother, Kathryn Achelis and her sister, Kris Bennett. She is preceded in death by her father and her brother, Robert Welshons and Kip Welshons.
Kim was born in California to Kathryn and Robert Welshons. She grew up in Santa Clara with her sister, where they were both active in gymnastics and swimming. Synchronized swimming became the sisters' passion and they spent their youth in the pool, practicing, competing and achieving world class championship status. 
In the early years of synchronized swimming, she was the most honored swimmer. The titles she received include fourteen international and thirteen national titles as well as a gold medal in the Pan American Games in 1963 at the age of 12. 
In 1966, at the request of President and Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson, Kim delivered a command performance in Mexico City at a reception held in honor of the Mexican President and Mrs. Diaz Ordaz. Later that year, Mrs. Johnson requested Kim to perform for President Johnson, Governor and Mrs. Edmund G Brown and a host of other celebrities at the Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California.
Although Kim retired from her swimming career in 1970, she continued to contribute to synchronized swimming and to the advancement and media recognition of the sport. She coached the Mexican National Team for two years and served as technical spokesperson, and provided color commentary for the major television networks for eight years. Not only was Kim a repeat champion as a member of the Santa Clara Aquamaids, but she was an outstanding international representative for synchronized swimming and US women in sports. Kim was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1988.
Kim was also a former chairwoman of the city of Carlsbad Parks and Recreation Commission. Recently she served as President of the Homeowners Association of Lake Shore Gardens where she earned respect for her leadership abilities and made many friends in this wonderful community. 
Kim will be remembered as a leader, a champion athlete, a cherished friend, and a fighter.
Published in San Jose Mercury News/San Mateo County Times on Mar. 15, 2015
- See more at:

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Lauderdale's planned swim center still creating waves

Price for Lauderdale's new swim center jumps $3.6 millionWatch video here:
Plans for a new Fort Lauderdale aquatic center have been swimming in controversy for years.
And now the cost is going up. The price tag has jumped by $3.6 million, to $37.3 million.
Commissioners may try to bring the project back on budget. Or they could challenge the contractor's price increase.
Mayor Jack Seiler would like nothing better than to see a new swim complex opened before he leaves office in 2018. It's a project he inherited when he became mayor in 2009.
Earlier efforts — the 2002 City Commission agreed to spend $27 million for a new complex — ended without success.
Commissioners will consider their options on March 17.
What's the history of the aquatic center?
The original complex opened in 1965 on state land as the home of the Swimming Hall of Fame, which became the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1968. The complex cemented the city's reputation as a top destination in the swimming world. Additional improvements were made in the 1980s and 1990s.
What's wrong with the current complex?
The center needs substantial repairs. Its grandstands were condemned in 2011 and its pools don't meet current competition standards. The city loses more than $1 million a year operating the center, although a new complex would still lose hundreds of thousands of dollars annually.
How did we get to the current situation?
The city had a grandiose vision when it sought to rebuild the complex in 2009, but only one firm — Recreational Design and Construction — submitted a bid. Its $76.1 million plan included restaurants, commercial space and artificial surf machines. Besides being too pricey for the city's budget, commissioners feared it would bring too much traffic and noise to the beach.
In 2011, a pair of independent reviews said RDC's business plan was deeply flawed and unrealistic. Commissioners requested a smaller, less-intense version — without seeking new bids — that would keep the city's cost below $25 million.
Didn't the Broward Inspector General get involved?

A 2013 inspector general's report found problems with bidding on the project. It said state law required at least three bids and criticized vague language in the city's request that made it hard for companies to compete fairly. It concluded the project should be rebid, but the city disagreed. The State Attorney's Office did not investigate the issue, officials there said.
Haven't there been repeated calls for the project to be rebid?
Yes. The commission's original proposal called for a public-private partnership that included the developer putting some of its own money into the project. RDC's proposal once included an $18.7-million private investment, but the current plan has none. That's a change that could have drawn more interest in the project.
Are there any other potential hold-ups still out there?
The property was deeded to the city by the state for a swimming hall of fame. Now that the hall of fame is moving to Santa Clara, Calif., and won't be part of the complex, the city will need clearance from state officials for their plans.
Why is the hall of fame leaving?
Hall officials were dissatisfied with the space the city allocated them. They felt left out of the planning and its director said the city was relying on an outdated competitive swimming model that wouldn't work without some type of water attraction that appealed to families. The city also refused to subsidize more of the hall's expenses.

What's the current deal?
The commission approved a contract with RDC in September 2012 for a "guaranteed maximum price" of $32.4 million. The commission also has another $1.3 million in changes that it plans to add to the project. RDC officials say the city has taken too long to get the project going, while the price of construction materials keeps rising. The company says the new price needs to be $37.3 million or the city can remove items to lower the cost.
Where's the money coming from?
The 2012 contract met the city's goal because only $24.8 million was coming from beach property tax dollars that have been reserved for redevelopment projects. The other $7.6 million is from parking revenue bonds, which would be paid back using parking fees from a new parking garage on the site. Paying for the additional $1.3 million in changes the city wants would bring its share to $26.1 million.
What will the new aquatic center have?
One of its existing, ground level Olympic-sized pools will now be the front of the redesigned complex, visible to passing traffic. Another 50-meter pool and dive pool will be atop a three-level parking garage. The diving platform would be wide enough to accommodate synchronized diving competitions and there has even been consideration of a super-tall platform that could be used for "cliff-diving" style competitions. The complex will also include an indoor training facility for divers.
The top front of the building will be a glass-enclosed banquet facility with vistas to the ocean and the Intracoastal Waterway.
RDC has suggested eliminating one of the parking levels and one story of the main building to lower costs.
Wasn't there a diving controversy?
Divers complained that placing the diving platform on top of the parking garage would be dangerous and subject them to stronger winds at the higher altitude. The city commissioned a wind study that showed the difference in wind speed was minimal at the higher level and the design received the approval of national swim and diving organizations.
Commissioners considered putting the dive platform out front of the new building, but that would have added about $6 million to the cost. or 954-356-4556