Six Up For Election To USA Swimming BOD At Annual Business Meeting

Two At-Large directors and one Athlete Representative will be elected to the USA Swimming Board of Directors this weekend at the organization’s Annual Business Meeting in Colorado Springs.

USA Swimming’s House of Delegates (HOD) will elect two At-Large directors for the organization’s Board of Directors on September 25, and electronic voting from September 17-24 will determine the one Athlete Representative to join the BOD. Voting is only open to eligible athletes.

For all the details regarding the Annual Business Meeting, click here.

A total of 12 applicants for the At-Large positions has been whittled down to four, while there are two up for election as the Athlete Representative.

To be eligible to be an Athlete Representative, nominees must have:

  1. within the ten (10) years preceding election, represented the United States in the Olympic or Pan American Games, or an Operation Gold event, or a World Championship recognized by the NGB’s IF for which a competitive selection process was administered by the NGB…or
  2. within the twenty-four (24) months before election, demonstrated that they are actively engaged in amateur athletic competition by finishing in the top half of the NGB’s national championships or team selection competition for the events outlined in subparagraphs (1) or (2)

The Nominees – At-Large Director

Maria Davila

Davila, a native of San Diego, Calif., became an athlete representative for San Diego Imperial Swimming in 2016, founding the SI Athletes’ Executive Committee (AEC) and SI Athlete Leadership Summit. She was elected to the Western Zone Athlete Representatives and appointed to the National Rules and Regulations Committee in 2018, and in 2019, was elected to the National AEC and collaborated with USA Swimming on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion practices and policy revamping to comply with the Ted Stevens Act.

Dr. Cecil Gordon

Gordon served on the USA Swimming Board of Directors in 2018 and also served as the Chair of the DEI and Safe Sport National Committees. Also the Current Chair of the USA Swimming Foundation Board, Gordon has been a USA Swimming volunteer for 20 years and was named to the FINA Lists as a referee, starter and an Open Water official, officiating three Olympic Trials meets along with the 2015 World Championships in Kazan and the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

Jeanette Skow

A swimmer from a young age, Skow competed at the NCAA level for Princeton University during her career and was a four-year member of the school’s Air Force ROTC program. Skow served as an Air Force officer for 20 years after graduating. She first served as an intelligence officer and later as an attorney in the JAG Corps upon being selected for the Air Force’s Funded Legal Education Program and earning a Juris Doctorate from the University of Cincinnati College of Law. Skow was elected to the USA Swimming Board of Directors in 2018, and retired from the Air Force in the same year.

Jack Swanson

A competitive swimmer since 2005, Swanson has served as a chair on local committees and as a member on national-level committees, having been involved with Minnesota Swimming and USA Swimming governance since 2013. A recent Pomona College grad who is currently a Ph.D. candidate in Biomedical Sciences at the Mayo Clinic, Swanson says he is running “with the vision that USA Swimming is an athlete-centered organization where the time and talents of dedicated coaches and volunteers are crucial for our short-term and long-term success.”

The Nominees – Athlete Representative

Maya Dirado Andrews

Dirado Andrews is a well-known figure in the swimming community, having won four Olympic medals representing the U.S. at the 2016 Games in Rio. Dirado Andrews currently serves on USA Swimming’s Board of Directors as an Athlete Representative and has also served on the organization’s foundation board. A two-time individual NCAA champion while at Stanford, where she studied Management Science and Engineering, Dirado Andrews is currently pursuing her MBA at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business along with a master’s degree in Environment and Resources.

Her USA Swimming description includes the following:

“She is passionate about helping athletes successfully transition to careers after swimming, ensuring that USA Swimming is well-positioned to continue producing champions as the collegiate and international environments change rapidly, and promoting swimming as a safe and inclusive sport for all potential members.”

DiRado was elected to serve a three-year term as a USA Swimming Athlete Representative in 2018.

Andrew Gemmell

Gemmell, a 2012 U.S. Olympian, currently serves on USA Swimming’s International Relations Committee and says his interest in joining the board “stems first and foremost from wanting to ensure current and future swimmers have even better opportunities and experiences than past generations.” Gemmell spent nine years as a member of USA Swimming’s National Team and also has seven years of governance experience across a variety of committees.

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Remember Me?
29 days ago

Oh good, a bigger platform for DiRado when wagging her proverbial finger at Michael Andrew.

Sam Hornblower
29 days ago

How about Ira Klein? I thought he was running for a position. Quite frankly he is the most qualified for this!! Get the votes going for our boy!! We need more coaches on the BOD

Grassroots Swimmer
Reply to  Sam Hornblower
29 days ago

I believe Ira is running as a self-nominated candidate and didn’t make it through the Nominating Committee’s vetting process. In particular, the my understanding is that the committee was looking for candidates with strategic communication backgrounds, and candidates with recent grassroots competitive experiences. Having worked with all four of the vetted candidates, I believe that all four of the vetted candidates would do an excellent job and would help USA Swimming move out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

magic juice
Reply to  Sam Hornblower
29 days ago

We literally don’t need more coaches on the BOD. Coaches and swimdads have been running the BOD forever, and they’ve failed in almost every way imagineable, including the worst ways imagineable.

It’s time to start running USA Swimming like the professional, $40-million-a-year corporation that it is.

Should coaches have a seat at the table? Sure. They’re important stakeholders. But they don’t need MORE seats at the table. They shouldn’t dominate the board.

PS – this has nothing to do with Ira. I don’t know Ira or really anything about him. It’s more that most coaches don’t really have much to add when it comes to marketing, insurance negotiations, financial management, managing a large staff of adults, etc.

Last edited 29 days ago by magic juice
Reply to  magic juice
29 days ago

This is an uneducated comment. There are more officials on the BOD than there are coaches, and that has been the case for quite some time. With only 4 coaches out of 15 spots on the board, they are far from dominating the board composition.

Reply to  Sam Hornblower
29 days ago

Ira seems like a nice man, but he would be a terrible choice. As a former ASCA board member and USA Swimming employee and board member, his ties, friendship and support of Chuck Wielgus, John Leonard and Pat Hogan would make it a slap in the face to sexual abuse victims and the entire USA Swimming membership, which has been victimized by the board’s and executive’s massive insurance fraud and financial mismanagement. Ira appears to be part of the problem, not the solution…

Last edited 29 days ago by Guerra
29 days ago

We don’t just need coaches, we need the right coaches, to serve on the board of directors. Most, if not all, of the past coaches that have served on the board have done a poor job and Chuck Wielgus and his inner circle took advantage of this. Some of them love the politics more than the coaching and others were seduced by the perks and the increased influence and prestige of being on the board. There are even two coaches that were on the board that should have been put on Safesport’s banned list, but because of who they were and who they aligned with, they skated. Nevertheless, they were all “rubber stamps” for scandal and corruption (similar to what… Read more »

Last edited 29 days ago by Guerra

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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