At the recent United States Aquatic Sports Convention held in Greensboro, North Carolina Sept. 10- 17, three members of the Berkeley Aquatic Club family won elected positions, one received a prestigious award and another participated as an athlete representative.
Nicholas Smagula, a senior at Randolph High School and a member of the Berkeley Heights Senior Swim team, was elected Eastern Zone Athlete Representative Member of the Eastern Zone Board and Athlete Executive Committee. Smagula will represent all athletes in the Eastern Zone, the seaboard states from Maine to Virginia, at the convention next year as well as at the Eastern Zone Executive Committee meetings. In his campaign speech, Smagula stated that his goal as representative was to keep the athletes better informed and more involved in the political and rule side of the sport since the athletes are directly affected but usually are unaware of the behind-the-scenes activities. Nick was elected Junior Representative for the athletes of New Jersey Swimming in 2011 and attended the United States Aquatic Sports Convention held in Jacksonville, Florida and this year was the Senior Representative.
Katie Paris, a junior at New Providence High School and also a member of the Berkeley Aquatic Senior swim team, was the 2012 Junior Athlete Representative for New Jersey swimming and attended the Convention in Greensboro with her teammate.
Jim Wood, Head Coach at Berkeley Aquatic Club and a New Providence resident, was reelected United States Aquatic Sports President for the 2012-2014 term. Wood has served as President of the organization, which represents United States of America Swimming, United States Diving, United States Synchronized Swimming, USA Water Polo and the United States Masters Swimming as a member of the Federation Internationale de Natation (FINA), the international organization responsible for these sports throughout the world. Wood has been president of the organization from 2010 to the present and prior to that served as President of USA Swimming for four years.
Sue Kirk, a resident of Long Valley, was awarded the Dorothy Donnelly award for outstanding volunteer service. Sue has served as Secretary and then Chair of New Jersey Masters Swimming for a number of years. She is a member of the Berkeley Aquatic Masters Swimming where she often acts as a volunteer coach. She has a passion for open water swimming and on Aug. 4, competed in the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim as a part of a four-person, all-female relay in a 28.5 mile swim circumnavigating Manhattan.
Chris McGiffin, a resident of Basking Ridge, was re-elected for a second, two-year term to the US Masters Swimming Board of Directors as the At-Large Director of the Colonies Zone. Chris has served as Chair of NJ Masters Swimming, and currently serves as a Vice Chair and co-Registrar. As a member of Berkeley Aquatic Masters, Chris trains to compete in the distance freestyle and individual medley events, and has achieved 26 Top Ten finishes since 1995 in USMS National Championship pool events.