Coach Aj Lee flew to South Carolina yesterday to attend The USA Swimming Southern Zone Diversity and Inclusion Summit to represent Southeastern Swimming (Tennessee, Alabama, and the Florida Panhandle). He, along with 13 other coaches and 48 athletes across the Southern United States, will be working on USA Swimming Diversity and Inclusions Initiatives. It is a huge step in Aj’s journey from an 11 year old SEASTARS Swimmer to an almost 21 year old SEASTARS Coach. I am so proud of him and how he has grown over the past year and am excited to hear all about this trip. Lots of classroom time today, but tomorrow they will finish up by going to a USC Baseball game and he’ll be home on Sunday.
Aj is having such an amazing time in South Carolina. Yesterday he met Maritza McClendon, who is an Olympic swimmer from the United States. When she qualified for the U.S. Olympic Team in 2004, she became the first Puerto Rican of African descent to be a member of the U.S. Olympic swimming team. She also became the first black American swimmer to set an American and world swimming record. He was able to watch the 48 Select Camp Athletes practice and learned a lot of drills and ideas for our swimmers. Tonight they go to a baseball game. I am so proud of our coach!