Swimming Canada Names New BOD, Announces ‘Big Splash’ Nominees

  0 Braden Keith | October 22nd, 2012 | News

There’s lots of post-Olympic excitement happening in Canada, including the announcement of a new Board of Directors, including one former National Team swimmer, the announcement of their Big Splash Award nominees, and an addition to their Montreal National Training Centre staff.

First, the new appointments. Cheryl Gibson and Kerry Mummery were added to the organization’s Board of Directors. Gibson is a chartered accountant and a lawyer by trade, but in a prior life was a member of the Canadian National Team from 1974 through 1982. Her highest achievement was at the 1976 Olympics, where in front of a home crowd in Montreal, she won a silver medal in the women’s 400 IM.

Mummery doesn’t have quite as many accolades in the pool (though he did swim collegiately at the University of Manitoba), but has an extensive background in coaching and sports science. Among the more recognizable clubs for which he coached is the Oakville Aquatic Club, and currently serves as the Dean of the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the University of Alberta. Prior to that he spent time in Australia and served as the President-elect at Sports Medicine Australia.

Meanwhile, joining the staff at the Montreal National Training Centre as an assistant is Tom Rushton. Rushton comes from the UBC Dolphins Swim Club that is one of the best in Canada. That club is home to, among others, Olympians Brent Hayden, Scott Dickens, Tera van Beilen, Martha McCabe, Heather Maclean, and Savannah King. Between this hiring, and that of Ben Titley to take over the Toronto site, is that Swimming Canada is going to make an effort to push athletes toward these funded National Training Centers in the next Olympic cycle.

Rushton is one of the nominees for this year’s Big Splash Awards in the Club Coach of the Year category. The Big Splash awards are Canada’s major annual awards ceremony: the equivalent of the Golden Goggles Awards.

The entire awards show will be livecast on Swimming Canada’s live internet channel www.swimcanweb.tv.

The two major honors go to the Male and Female Swimmers of the Year. The two awards are challenging for different reasons: on the men’s side, because both won Olympic medals (Hayden a bronze in the 100 free and Cochrane silver in the 1500). Our choice probably goes to Cochrane on the fact that his swim is a new North American Record, and he was runner-up only to possibly the greatest distance swimmer in history Sun Yang. Strangely, open water bronze medalist Richard Weinberger didn’t get a nomination in the overall category, but instead is the only nominee in the open water category.

On the women’s side, the choice is tough because none of the three won medals. They are, however, the only three Canadian women to make an Olympic final. Though McCabe’s 200 breaststroke finish of 5th was closest to landing a podium, our vote goes to Brittany MacLean. She took the 400 free National Record from an average 4:07 to a very good 4:05.06 between the Olympic Trials and the Olympic prelims.

2012 Big Splash Award Nominees

CSCTA Canadian Club Coach of the Year – sponsored by IHG
Tom Rushton, Vancouver Dolphins
Kevin Thorburn, Etobicoke
Sean Baker, Oakville Aquatic Club
Omega Male Swimmer of the Year
Ryan Cochrane, Island Swimming/Victoria Academy
Brent Hayden, Vancouver National Swim Centre
Omega Female Swimmer of the Year
Brittany MacLean, Etobicoke Swimming
Martha McCabe, Vancouver Dolphins/Vancouver National Swim Centre
Sinead Russell, Blue Waves
TAS Para-swimming Male Swimmer of the Year
Nathan Stein, Surrey Knights Swim Club
Zack McAllister, Lethbridge Swim Club
Benoit Huot, Piscine Parc Olympique
TAS Para-swimming Female Swimmer of the Year
Valerie Grand-Maison, Club Aquatic Montreal Olympique
Summer Mortimer, Ducks Swimming
Brianna Nelson, Island Swimming
Open Water Swimmer of the Year
Richard Weinberger, Pacific Coast Swimming

Canadian Swimming People’s Choice Race of the Year
Our swimming community will choose the winner of the Race of the year in 2012!  Stay tuned for the nominees and get ready to vote early and often

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Braden Keith

The most common question asked about Braden Keith is "when does he sleep?" That's because Braden has, in two years in the game, become one of the most prolific writers in swimming at a level that has earned him the nickname "the machine" in some circles. He first got his feet …

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