SOURCE: YMCA of Central Florida

Rebekah Riley

May 07, 2014 11:22 ET

YMCA Names US Olympic Hall of Fame Swimmer Rowdy Gaines Vice President of Aquatics

ORLANDO, FL--(Marketwired - May 07, 2014) - The YMCA of Central Florida announces that Rowdy Gaines, three-time Olympic gold medalist and member of the International Swimming Hall of Fame, will be joining the YMCA of Central Florida as Vice President of Aquatics.

Gaines, known as the fastest human in the water over the age of 50, sees this new role as an "an opportunity to spread the love for swimming as a lifelong, lifestyle activity for people of all ages and abilities. I'm excited to be a part of an organization that recognizes the importance of swimming and getting people engaged in the water," says Gaines.

"Rowdy is a natural fit for the Y," says Jim Ferber, President/CEO of the YMCA of Central Florida. "He embodies the Y spirit and love of all aquatics activities we host at the Y, from Safe Start for infants, to school age swim skill lessons and swim teams, to our senior water fitness programs."

A Florida native who tried five other sports before finding his niche in the water at the age of 17, Gaines has been an ambassador for the sport of swimming since winning three gold medals at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles. Gaines also serves as the "voice of swimming" as a color analyst for NBC and will cover his 7th Olympic Games in Rio 2016. As Chief Fundraising and Alumni Officer for USA Swimming, he has helped promote the culture of swimming by creating opportunities for swimmers and coaches of all backgrounds to participate and advance in the sport through clubs, events and education.

Gaines will work with the Y's aquatics staff throughout Central Florida in its 20 locations and 30 pools to meet the high demand for all Y aquatics programs. He will also be overseeing the YMCA Aquatic Center and its operation which includes a full-service Y in addition to an intense level of swimming, diving and water polo training and competition.

For more information or to set up a conversation with Rowdy, please contact Dori Madison at (407) 474-7885 or via email at

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