International Swimming Hall of Fame Honorees By Category - Coach

Boris Popov (2019)
He was born in Moscow in 1941, during WWII, and grew up in Moscow at the height of the cold war. It was when sports in the Soviet Union were under the supervision of the ministry of defense and Boris Popov began his playing water polo at the TsSK Navy Children’s School. From 1960 through 1973 he played for the Moscow State University team and in 1964, was a member of the Soviet team that won the bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics and gold at the 1966 European Championships.
Bill Sweetenham (2018)
Bill Sweetenham grew up in poverty in the rural part of Australia, in a place called Mount Isa, a mining town out in the middle of nowhere. He found refuge from this tough environment and from his father’s strict discipline through participation in sports, especially swimming.
Richard Jochums (2017)
Dick’s journey to the Swimming Hall of Fame began when his mother insisted he learn to swim. His first swim teacher and coach was Laurabelle Bookstaver, of the Berkeley Women’s City Club. Under the tutelage of this tough talking woman, Dick fell in love with the sport. He earned a scholarship to the University of Washington where John Tallman turned him into an All-American sprinter and took him on as his assistant. Leaving Washington to continue his studies at Cal, he joined Pete Cutino’s staff as his assistant. Over the years he had studied the methods of George Haines, Sherm Chavoor, Peter Daland and Jim Counsilman and after receiving his Ph. D., accepted the coaching and teaching position at UC Hayward. It was at Hayward where Dr. Robert Morford led him to discover the ancient Greek concept of Agon and Areté - the struggle and the victory.
James Gaughran (2015)
He grew up in San Francisco where he was taught to swim by his father at China Beach, in the shadow of the Golden Gate Bridge. At Sequoia High School, in Redwood City, he developed into a champion swimmer and water polo player under coach Clyde Devine, who predicted Jim Gaughran would one day be an Olympian.
Don Watson (2015)
Don Watson’s swimming life began in the mid-1940s when, having just turned 13, he joined the St. Louis YMCA swim team. Now, as it turned out, the St. Louis Y had among its members, an outstanding swimmer who would have a profound influence not only on Don’s life, but on the sport of swimming. That swimmer was Jim Counsilman, better known to us today as “Doc.”
Masako Kaneko (2015)
Masako Kaneko was born in Tokyo, Japan on April 17, 1944 and has contributed as both a swimmer and coach since the beginning of synchronized swimming in Japan.
Charlotte Davis (2014)
She began her love of swimming at age three. At 11, her older sisters taught her “water ballet” and she was immediately hooked. She loved the music, the creativity, the artistry and best of all, swimming upside down! She then discovered the Washington Athletic Club Synchronized Swimming Team, where she competed through high school. After high school, she moved and competed with the reigning National Champion, Santa Clara Aquamaids. It was with the Aquamaids, she became a National Team champion in 1970.
Alberto Castagnetti (2013)
Considered a coaching genius, Alberto Castagnetti was a “wizard of swimming” who made the Italian colors shine on the world stage. But he did not do magic. The reality was that he obtained magnificent results through hard work and unsurpassed professionalism. These were the talents that allowed him to write his name on the greatest chapter of Italian swimming history.
Laszlo Kiss (2012)
Every so often, a coach will come along who has the ability to lift his swimmers to new heights, as Laszlo Kiss did establishing Olympic champions.
Denes Kemeny (2011)
Born in Budapest 1954, Denes Kemeny began playing water polo at the young age of six. For the next 21 years, he played for six teams making the Hungarian National Team from 1974 to 1986 and competed in over 17 international games for his country.
Tamás Széchy (2010)
In his native Hungary, he was known as “The Swimming Pope.” He was one of the most productive coaches of his generation, developing Olympic medalists at the Central Sports Club of Budapest for a 25-year period beginning in 1972 with Andras Hargatay winning the bronze medal in the 400 m IM at the Munich Olympic Games.
Murray Stephens (2010)
In 1968, Murray Stephens co-founded the North Baltimore Aquatic Club, which, in the eyes of Olympic Coach Mark Schubert, became “the best swimming club program in America” rivaling clubs in the sunbelts of California and Florida. He trained local swimmers and attracted other swimmers to relocate to his facility where he would turn them from good swimmers into great swimmers.
Ikkaku Matsuzawa (2009)
No other swimming coach has single-handedly developed, trained and organized a national team to Olympic and international prominence more so than Japan's Ikkaku Matsuzawa.
Jon Urbanchek (2008)
Wherever Jon Urbanchek goes, honors follow him.
Debbie Muir (2007)
For a 12-year period from 1978 to 1991, most all of Canada's international synchronized swimming medalists came from Coach Debbie Muir's hometown team, the Calgary Aquabelles. She began her coaching career in 1973 as an assistant with the Aquabelles and became the head coach within two years.