Convention 2019 Blog: Day Three

Convention 2019 Blog: Day Three

By Convention Education Committee  | Saturday, September 14, 2019

Jamie Bloom 

Today started with a nice breakfast at Red’s. It’s important to start the day with a good breakfast! From there I was off to another day filled with meetings and awesome networking opportunities.

My first meeting was A Team Approach Today for a Better Tomorrow. I attended a meeting with these presenters last year and was so impressed I knew that I needed to return this year. They did not disappoint and I walked away with good information, especially about concussions and swimmers. Thanks Dr. Danny & Keenan!

Next up was the always popular session with Russell Mark. Russell shared some key thoughts regarding pre race differences between National and Jr National athletes at their respective world championships. He showed some stats (good and not so good) and of course he shared the video that we all look forward to watching. We learned that the butterfly revolution was wildly successful and that we need to get to work on becoming a World Distance swimming power.

After lunch I went to the coaches open forum. Joel & Lindsey led us through some good discussion on the previously mentioned distance swimming dilemma along with some other topics that the coaches in the room wanted to discuss.

Next up was the meet the candidates session. It’s good to hear from these folks and hopefully you got good information that will lead to your decision of who to vote for tomorrow at HOD. Good luck to all of the candidates!

Finally, the last meeting of the day was the House of Delegates! This is mostly the “non-business” part of HOD. It feels good to hear about all of the positive changes and plans that are taking place at 1 Olympic Plaza. Congratulations to all of the award recipients! It’s humbling to sit in the room and hear about your inspirational accomplishments.  In my opinion, the best part of tonight’s meeting was the opportunity to watch the  World Championships video, it’s so exciting and motivating to once again get to see our outstanding national team athletes in action. I also know that many of you are playing Lingo Bingo! Thank you for not shouting BINGO! I hope you got a good prize!

I hope you’ve all had a good week. The changes that have been implemented seem to be positive and productive. I’d like to say a shout out to my North Carolina teammates for the exciting victory in the LSC amazing race! Well played 😎

Have a safe trip home and we’ll see you next year in Jacksonville!

Go USA Swimming!

Kylie Kelly

It’s Friday here and convention is finally on its last leg for the week. The athletes had their final practice this morning followed by an athlete meeting focused on being informative surrounding athlete engagement in various areas. Athletes were able to see what each committee fellow gets to do and why they do it. Then numerous general chairs joined the athletes in discussing their goals and hopes surrounding the LSC’s mission statement and core values. Athletes were able to see how specific they need to get and how to gain confidence when presenting to their LSC board.

This afternoon athletes got the chance to sight see and many visited the Arch! This afternoon’s athlete meeting was for voting purposes concerning the AEC and then all the athletes headed on over to the “Meet the Candidates” running for the USA Swimming board. Finishing up the night is the first half of HOD so be sure to stay engaged and use your athlete voice!

Here’s to Lingo Bingo!

Jayne Spittler

Hi there.  Jayne Spittler, veteran official from Illinois Swimming.   As another Convention nears conclusion and my 10-year stint on the Convention Education Committee comes to an end, it seems appropriate to offer some Convention reflections.

We convene – from the Latin convenio  “come, gather or meet together, assemble.”  We gather across stakeholders as a membership-based organization, not as coaches or officials or athletes, but as members who are passionate about the sport of swimming.   We come to consider legislation, to elect new Board and Zone Directors, to hear reports about the State of our Sport, to be involved in the valuable work of our National Committees.    Along the way, in hallways, restaurants, lobbies and meeting rooms we make new friends, we strengthen connections, we gain new insights and points of view, we fuel our passion and commitment, we learn to appreciate and trust our differences and celebrate our common goals.    And we NEVER yell “Lingo Bingo”  at the HOD.

In a world of easy electronic communication, Convention is still an in-person experience. 

Convention has changed over the years, just has the world has.   We meet for fewer days, the types and content of meetings and workshops has evolved, we have become more electronic with SCHED, our online scheduling platform, our email Psych Sheet, our Facebook Group.  This year we are paperless.  For me, the biggest evolution has been the involvement and leadership of our athletes in our LSCs and national committees.  The energy and enthusiasm and commitment and fearlessness that they bring  to our sport is renewing and humbling.  We are in good hands!

Two things at tonight’s HOD drove home why we are so passionate about our sport.  Our first order of business is always to remember those who have left us physically – coaches, officials, athletes, volunteers – but who have left us with a legacy that we are duty-bound to continue.   At the end of the agenda on Friday, the National Committees honor those who have made significant impacts to our sport in their respective areas.   Wow, wow, wow!   The accomplishments of these folks in areas like Safe Sport (a sergeant in the Colorado Springs Police Department, DEI (the Chicago Park District for bringing our sport to underserved communities), Officials (Melissa Hellervik-Bing for her dedicated work with the officials’ mentoring and evaluation program) to name a few.   The articulateness with which they accept their awards, their passion, their cheerleading as they urge us to a higher bar is almost overwhelming. 

The Convention Education Committee has worked hard this year and every year.   We were so grateful for the shout-out from the podium by Bob Vincent, Chair of the Board.   Tonight’s award recipients confirm why everyone’s work to make our sport even better is both important and so meaningful!   I am blessed and grateful to have served with ConvEd members for the past 10 years.



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