Three-time Olympic gold medalist Adam Peaty was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for services to swimming and mental health at a ceremony in Windsor Castle earlier this week.
Peaty, 27, receives the honor five years after earning an MBE (Member of the Order of the British Empire) in 2017, which came after his Olympic gold medal triumph at the 2016 Games in Rio.
This latest honor comes after Peaty successfully defended his Olympic title in the men’s 100 breaststroke, having won a repeat gold medal last summer in Tokyo. Peaty also won Olympic gold on Great Britain’s mixed 400 medley relay, and added a silver medal on the men’s medley relay.
“Words can’t describe how proud I am to receive this prestigious honor,” Peaty said on social media. “Thank you to all the people that have helped get me this far – big or small it all matters. Time to enter new territory.”
Adam Peaty O.B.E. (Officer of the Order of the British Empire)
Words can’t describe how proud I am to receive this prestigious honour. Thank you to all the people that have helped get me this far – big or small it all matters. Time to enter new territory. 🇬🇧 pic.twitter.com/qsytodRwBC
— Team GB (@TeamGB) November 9, 2022
Peaty was first announced as an honoree of the OBE in the New Year’s list at the end of 2021 alongside fellow aquatics athletes Tom Daley (diving), Bethany Firth (Para swimming) and Hannah Russell (Para swimming). Chris Spice, the Performance Director for British Swimming, was also promoted to OBE status.
Order of the British Empire honors were established in 1917 by King Georgie V, and includes five tiers across civilian and military divisions. The top two classes of the honor anoint an individual as a knight if male or dame if female.
Several swimmers were appointed MBE, the fifth tier, at the end of 2021 when Peaty received his OBE status. That included Tokyo 2020 Olympic medalists Freya Anderson, Kathleen Dawson, Tom Dean, James Guy, Anna Hopkin, Calum Jarvis, Matthew Richards, and Duncan Scott; plus triple Paralympic gold medalist Reece Dunn, double Paralympic gold medalist Maisie Summers-Newton, Paralympic gold medalist Tully Kearny, and Paralympic gold medalist Jordan Catchpole.
Peaty was forced to miss the 2022 World Championships this past summer after injuring his foot, and returned one month later to compete at the Commonwealth Games on his home soil in Birmingham, England, where he won gold in the men’s 50 breast while surprisingly missing the podium in the 100 breast.
With that setback serving as motivation, Peaty has recommitted himself to training full-on and will contest the Short Course World Championships next month in Melbourne, Australia, kickstarting the 18-month run-up to the 2024 Olympics in Paris.