Friday, July 31, 2015

ISHOF’s de Varona and Ellis Recognized As Leaders by USA Swimming and Speedo

ISHOF Chair of the Board, Donna de Varona and Board Member Jim Ellis have been named to the USA Swimming/Speedo List of the 30 Most Influential People In Swimming Over the Past 30 Years.  Also making the list are 10 Hall of Fame Honorees:  Matt Biondi, Peter Daland, Janet Evans, Rowdy Gaines, Dick Pound, Richard Quick, Eddie Reese, Mark Schubert, Nick Thierry and John Urbanchek.

These individuals are synonymous with the incredible growth weve enjoyed in swimming, at every stage: learning to swim, team swimming, college level and representing our country on the podium, said Jim Sheehan, USA Swimming President. “The commitment and contributions from Speedo USA have been instrumental over the last 30 years for many of the Whos Who on this list and thousands of others who participate in our sport on a daily basis.

Donna de Varona is a two-time Olympian who won two gold medals. After her swimming career ended, de Varona went on to become ABCs first full-time female sportscaster and an avid advocate for the advancement of womens sports through Title IX. She is a member of the International Womens Sports Hall of Fame, the International Swimming Hall of fame and was the first president of the Womens Sports Foundation.  She has served on ISHOFs Board of Directors since 2005 and is the current Chair of the Board.

Jim Ellis is renowned for his devoted efforts to promote diversity within the sport of swimming. In 1971 he founded the Philadelphia Department of Recreation Swim Team, a team of predominantly African-American swimmers. His story of bringing swimming to the lives of inner city youth and their families was brought even further into the public spotlight through the 2007 movie, Pride. Jim has served on ISHOFs Board of Directors since 2007.

For the complete list:

Individuals on the #30MostSwimfluential list were evaluated on contributions to the sport in the United States from 1985-2015. Eligibility for consideration and selection was not dependent on an association with Speedo. A panel consisting of select USA Swimming staff, USA Swimming Board of Directors, coaches, industry historians and media determined the final list.

The list was compiled to celebrate the 30th Anniversary of Speedos sponsorship of USA Swimming. 

Speedo USA supports swimmers and coaches at all levels and we are proud of our 30 year partnership with USA Swimming said Speedo USA President Jim Gerson. This milestone is an opportunity to celebrate the progress of the sport over the past 30 years and the incredible individuals whose contributions have been instrumental to its growth.

USA Swimming and Speedo are corporate partners of the International Swimming Hall of Fame.

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Class of 2015 Announced For The International Masters Swimming Hall Of Fame

FORT LAUDERDALE – The International Masters Swimming Hall of Fame (IMSHOF) is proud to announce its class of inductees for 2015. The group of seven outstanding individuals will be inducted at the annual ceremony to be held on Friday evening, October 2nd, 2015, at the Marriott Downtown, in Kansas City, MO, in conjunction with the 2015 United States Aquatic Sports XXXVI Convention. The prestigious IMSHOF class of 2015 includes four swimmers, one diver, one synchronized swimmer and one contributor, from three different countries: the USA, Australia, and Japan.

Nagaoka, who started her swimming career at 80, achieved her first Japanese Masters record at the age of 84. At the age of 95 she claimed her first world record in the 200m backstroke. She has set 34 long course and 24 short course FINA masters world records, and has competed in 5 FINA World Championships.

Shoko has set 39 FINA Masters World Records, 15 long course meters in the breaststroke and backstroke and 24 short course meters in individual medley, breaststroke and backstroke. She has accumulated 36 -number 1, 21 -number 2 and 21 -number 3 long course meters rankings and 36 -number 1, 24 -number 2 and 16 -number 3 short course rankings for a total of 72 -number 1, 45 -number 2 and 37 -number 3 world rankings. She competed at the 2002 FINA Masters World Championships winning 2 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze medal.

Radcliff has set 29 FINA Masters World Records, 18 long course meters and 11 short course meters in the freestyle events from the 50 to 1500 meters. Beginning with world rankings in 1997, he has 45 -number 1, 17 -number 2 and 7 -number 3 long course meters rankings and 43 -number 1, 15 -number 2 and 10 -number 3 short course meters rankings for a total of 88 -number 1, 32 -number 2 and 17 -number 3 world rankings. He has competed in the 2006 and 2008 FINA Masters World Championships winning 7 gold, 2 silver and 1 bronze medal. David had a big run in 2014 breaking 12 world records in his new age group (80-85).

As a versatile swimmer, he set 23 FINA Masters World Records, 15 long course meters and 8 short course meters in the freestyle, breaststroke, butterfly and I.M. In 2014 alone, he broke seven world records in six events in long and short course. He has competed in 2 FINA Masters World Championships (2006 & 2008) winning 7 gold, 2 silver and 1 bronze medal in the freestyle. Jack is the only man to hold a US Masters Swimming national record in the same event (100m free) across five age groups.

As an Australian, Anielle Claverstyne Plowman has won 38 USA Masters Diving titles and 25 of 27 international events she entered as well as every Australian masters event she entered. Most of her winning margins have been very substantial; in many cases she did not require the points of her last dive to win the event.

Penny has a lifelong love for the sport of Synchronized Swimming. A member of the Unsyncables of La Mirada, Penny has also been a coach, judge, and committee chair. Penny began synchro masters in 1991 when she was age 49 and has continued now swimming into her 70s. She has participated in 11 Masters World Championships, 23 US National Championships and 1 Canadian National Championship. She was awarded the May McEwan Award in 2002 as someone who has made outstanding contributions to and best exemplifies the spirit of Masters synchro.

From the earliest days of Masters Swimming, Nancy has been a seminal force in all things Masters. For her local club (Tamalpais Aquatic Masters), LMSC (Pacific Masters Swimming) and United States Masters Swimming, Nancy has been there to contribute. Key to that commitment is Nancy’s participation as an athlete. While fostering her contributions on the deck, Nancy’s swimming accomplishments and performances have positioned her at the pinnacle of the sport through over 4 decades of competition. While her swimming resume is full of world records, national records, and Top 10 performances, this recognition is for her many roles behind the scenes, that have been a crucial part of Masters Swimming’s growth and success.

The purpose of the IMSHOF is to promote a healthy lifestyle, lifelong fitness and participation in adult aquatic programs by recognizing the achievements of individuals who serve as an example for others. To be considered, honorees must have participated in Masters programs through at least four different masters age groups.  The IMSHOF is a division of the International Swimming Hall of Fame, in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. For more information, please visit:


The International Swimming Hall of Fame, Inc. (ISHOF), established in 1965, is a not-for-profit educational organization located in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA. Recognized by FINA, the International Olympic Committee’s recognized governing body for the aquatic sports in 1968, its mission is to promote the benefits and importance of swimming as a key to fitness, good health, quality of life, and the water safety of all children and adults. For more information please visit

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

In Memorium Galina Prozumenschikova (November 26, 1948- July 19, 2015)

From Russia comes the sad news that Galina Prozumenschikova has passed away at the age of 66.  In
Olympic pool of Tokyo-1964, she was a 15-years-old blonde Mermaid from Sebastopol who surprised the world by winning the final of 200 m in breast. She thus became the first Olympic swimming gold medalist for the Soviet Union at the Olympic Games.

Galina Prozumenshikova, was not the only European gold medal winner at the 1964 Olympics in Tokyo but 8 years later at Munich, with a three year old son, she was still a medalist. At Mexico City, in between her medals at Tokyo and Munich, an appendectomy a month before the meet and the altitude took its toll as Galina collapsed after the 200 (3rd) and lost the 100 by .001 to Bjedov of Yugoslavia (2nd) and Sharon Wickman of the USA (1st).

After the end of her prominent sporting career, she graduated from MoscowUniversity and taught at the Swim school of Soviet Army for children for many years.  

Prozumenschikova was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1977 and

in 2013, she was recognized as one of the "100 Greatest Swimmers in History" in a book by swim journalist John Lohn.