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Kerry O’Brien and Joel Wilson are the newest recipients of the Nancy Ridout Distinguished Service Award. The Ridout Award is given to individuals who have made a lasting contribution to Pacific Masters. Both longtime coaches of highly successful clubs, the two have mentored many younger coaches, been instrumental in the development of many of our events and programs including championship meets and open water swims and provided steady wise counsel to our Board and committees.
Bob Anderson was honored as Contributor of the Year. As the organization’s first Vice President for Communications and Technology, Bob oversaw the launch of our new website, pushed for a tracking system to let members keep track of their Swimmer of the Year points, advocated for improved access to the USMS swim results database and participated in the deliberations of several Pacific Masters Committees.
Appreciation Award winners were: David Benjamin, in recognition of his tireless efforts as an official at Pacific Masters swim meets; Rob Heath, for his management of Pacific Masters meet equipment and open water trailer; and the Pacific Masters Update Editors (Jeremy Cohen, Linda Shoenberger, Peggy Flynn, and Ali Hall) for their continued efforts to edit and publish the Update on a timely basis while maintaining high standards of quality.
Dave Wierdsma was selected as this year’s winner of the Peggy Lucchessi Award. This award was created by George Cunningham, one of the founding fathers of Pacific Masters, to honor his sister by recognizing an individual who exemplifies the joy and spirit of Masters swimming. After a hiatus it was re-established last year. As our frequent event announcer, Dave’s enthusiasm for our sport is obvious and makes him worthy winner of the award.
Finally, Suzie Dods was honored with the Pacific Masters Achievement Award. Suzie has recently completed the Triple Crown of Marathon Swimming (English Channel, Catalina Channel and around Manhattan Island). In addition to her swimming accomplishments she was recognized for her generosity in promoting open water swimming and encouraging pools swimmers to enjoy a new experience.
Congratulations to all our award winners!
A list of previous award winners is kept on our Annual Service Awards page.