“Achieving good performance is a journey, not a destination” Kenneth H. Blanchard
Since the late 1970’s my entire professional career has been spent seeking the best path to take on the journey towards not only good, but best performance for myself, and create ways to help others do the same.
Because good performance in our profession results in saving lives, the journey has been a passionate one, and has led down many unexpected paths – including that of starting and growing the Starfish Aquatics Institute.
Before starting SAI, I built broad experience across many years and areas of aquatics – from Guard Club in high school through working with national organizations while serving on the Board of the Council for National Cooperation in Aquatics. Along that journey I was fortunate to have mentors who inspired and encouraged me, and built relationships I still cherish to this day.
Based on those experiences and relationships, I saw an opportunity to create a service-based organization to fill a void in the aquatic industry and SAI was born. I’ve more recently had the opportunity to be involved in the creative side of authoring and acquiring educational resources for Human Kinetics. This new journey is rewarding and I feel like I’ve come full-circle, as the first book I co-authored, Creative Synchronized Swimming with the legendary Buhlah Gundling, was published by Human Kinetics in 1988.
I have been honored to be recognized as one of the Top 100 Leaders in the aquatic profession for 2003 and 2004, as featured in Aquatics International magazine, and consistently honored as one of the “25 most powerful people in the world of aquatics”. Along with this recognition comes responsibility, and I have been called on as an expert to testify in drowning or aquatic related injury cases. Being an advocate for best performance, I carefully evaluate each situation to determine whether I can defend the actions or must expose poor performance. I also have the opportunity to give back by serving on the writing committee for the Model Aquatic Health Code sponsored by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) and am the writing committee chair for the APSP-12 Standard for Risk Management and Operational Safety at Public Swimming Pools.
Achieving good performance isn’t possible without balance and stability in all aspects of life. When I’m not traveling you can find me in Savannah, GA where I enjoy kayaking and being with family – especially now that we have a third generation of little ones who are learning to love aquatics and always brighten my day.
LinkedIn profile / Power 25 / Power 25 profile
“I am easily satisfied with the best” Winston Churchill
I have been a coach throughout my career, mentoring swimmers and triathletes of all ages and abilities to be their best. And I’ve realized that I fit the description of “once a coach, always a coach”.
My area of focus within SAI is not much different than what I do from the pool deck: identify talent, motivate, cultivate, and recognize personal best effort, and create a plan for achieving the next goal. Coaching others on how to improve operations and be leaders, has been just as rewarding and I value the relationships I’ve made where colleagues and clients become friends and members of our extended family.
As for family, they are my pride and joy. As Winston Churchill said, “I am easily satisfied with the best” and have had that in over 35 years of marriage to Jill. The opportunity to work daily together and share a common goal, and also include our grown children in the journey as we together grow SAI has truly been amazing.