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Krystal Lara is one of very few Latinas in her class at Stuyvesant High School, and in the pool. She’s backstroking her way toward the Olympics.

From The New York Times:

Her Parents Thought Swimming Lessons Were a Good Idea

Krystal Lara is one of very few Latinas in her class at Stuyvesant High School, and in the pool. She’s backstroking her way toward the Olympics.…

Former Yale swimmer Siphiwe Baleka

Good video about former Yale swimmer Siphiwe Baleka


Seeking researchers to collaborate in the co-authorship of material and participate in action-oriented research aimed at developing solutions to the authentic, real-world problem of drowning among racial and ethnic minorities in the United States and underprivileged people throughout the world. Success in grant-writing and access to funding sources would be a plus.

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Hello Dean,

I found the research papers you shared very interesting and I would like to find out more about you and your invitation for research collaboration.  Is this research part of your graduate work?  

I'm an African American male who comes from a family primarily of recreational and fitness swimmers, but also two competitive swimmers and now three triathletes .

I'm the Diversity in Aquatics, Triathlon Council Chair, and I attended the first DAP Convention this past August.  I am also a member of the Broward County Drowning Prevention Taskforce and attend meetings monthly here in Broward County Florida.

I am also a member of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance, and attended their National Symposium this past spring in Fort Lauderdale.  

I have current certifications as: Red Cross Lifeguard, USA Swimming Coach Level 2, USA Triathlon Coach, PADI Open Water Diver (amongst other non-aquatic sports certifications).  I am also a life long US Masters swimmer and triathlete (still training coaching and competing, more for my personal fitness and a healthy lifestyle)

One of the things I have done as DAP Tri-Council Chair, is actively develop programs to attract minority men, women (and soon children) into the water, by means of "training for a triathlon" or "swimming for cross training" . So far, its proven more effective in the minority communities than just saying learn to swim to prevent drowning. 

Even the adults who know how to swim in the minority communities, many stop swimming. 

I currently have 3 pools, that I currently deisigning aquatic swimming and triathlon training for (we not only swim, do deep water run training etc.)

Let me know if you think I could be of service and how I could contribute to your research.


Thaddeus: Thanks for contacting me. I agree with you that providing alternatives to traditional learn-to-swim classes is important as a way of getting more people involved in aquatics. The approach to research that I am proposing is based on the idea of dialog, starting with learners' own experience and the problems that exist in their own lives. Therefore, if a person wants to compete in a triathlon, and she or he doesn't swim very well, that situation constitutes an authentic problem that would motivate the person to consider programming of the kind you provide. What would be a good way for us to learn a little more about our respective interests and explore how we might work together?


Just check up on you to see how things were going for you and the research? Hope all is well and that you can join us for the 2014 Diversity in Aquatics Convention Aug 15-17 in Lake Worth, Florida. 

I would love to get involved with this if you are still doing it. Plus, I have a fried who is doing her PHD on this subject. 

Hello Dean,

I am sorry that I lost contact with you and somehow did not reply to the last question you sent so long ago.  What is your status today with the research?  Where are you located?


Thaddeus - Thanks for getting back to me. Please see my response to Jennifer below. The comment applies to your inquiry, too.


Since I wrote the posting in 2013, I have had a number of life changes including a move to Madison, Wisconsin. There are some pilot projects in the works here. Because the subject matter and approach are ongoing interests of mine, I would like to eventually tie these initiatives back to the proposed research. However, nothing formal is in place right now.

Even though it is currently not my main focus, and I have other research underway, I would be happy to contribute if someone else were to get a project started. You can contact me here if you are beginning to get something organized.

We will be soliciting chapters for a book entitled Diversity in Aquatics. This will be a major undertaking. Submission guidelines for authors will be posted shortly.

Hi Dean,

Your research is absolutely amazing. I definitely like to be a part of what you are doing in any way possible. 

Best regards,


Thanks for checking in. Please see my post above dated March 11, 2015. Kind regards.

Hi Dean...Billl Ramos here at Indiana University. We've talked previously. I'm not in a tenure track role at Indiana University. Let me know if you'd like to talk more about collaboration.

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