SwimSwam’s #1 recruit for the class of 2018 and Cal Berkley commit Reece Whitley has been named to the 2018 Young Futurists list by The Root staff. The list is comprised of 25 African-American influencers, ages 15 and 22, that are “brilliant and inspirational leaders who are already charting their own paths in the worlds of business, science and tech, the arts, social justice and the environment.”
The Root references Whitley’s many accomplishments in the pool, starting with his performance at last summer’s 2017 FINA World Junior Championships where he captured three silver medals and was one of five team captains.
Whitley, who has been breaking national age group records for years, was named Sports Kid of the Year by Sports Illustrated in 2015. At the 2016 Olympic Trials in Omaha, Whitley, then 16-years-old, placed 13th in the 100 breaststroke and 14th in the 200 breaststroke.
The Root contrasts Whitley’s successes in the pool with statistics gathered by the USA Swimming Foundation which reveal that “64 percent of black children have low- to no swimming abilities.” Regarding those shocking numbers, Whitley once said “I think as I get older … I’m going to need to take—play—a key role in kind of integrating swimming into inner-city communities a lot more.”
Per The Root’s Facebook page, “The Root provides an unflinching analysis of important issues in the black community through insightful and savvy commentary from black thought-leaders.”
Feels great to be a part of this list. Thank you! @TheRoot https://t.co/2QdOUQN9P8
— Reece Whitley (@_reecewhitley) March 20, 2018