Cullen Jones, first Black American to hold a record in swimming

Through an inspiring collective of artists, swimming champions, aquatic activists, researchers and scholars, POOL invites visitors to challenge personal assumptions about the act of swimming together.

It encourages the examination of the role of public space in civic life today and in the building of healthy communities and a more just world. People such as swimming champions Cullen Jones, Maritza Correia McClendon, Simone Manuel and Sabir Muhammad, and aquatic activists, researchers and scholars such as Ed Accura, Naji Ali, Dr. Angela Beale-Tawfeeq, Kevin Colquitt, Malachi and Olivia Cunningham, Dr. Kevin Dawson, Coach Jim Ellis, Rhonda Harper, Dr. Miriam Lynch, Anthony Patterson, Sr., Bruce Wigo, Dr. Jeff Wiltse and the national grassroots network Diversity in Aquatics, Inc. believe the answer to correcting these disparities can be found in making the lifesaving skill of swimming available to all. Collectively, these voices provide personal perspectives of this history and legacy of segregated swimming in America. These are the voices that POOL sets out to amplify.

Listen to our interviews below.

Dr. Miriam Lynch, a swimmer, coach and the Executive Director of Diversity in Aquatics
Naji Ali long-distance swimmer and creator of Crossing the Lane Lines, a podcast series dedicated to giving voice to the Black Swim community
Rhonda Harper, founder of Black Girls Surf
Dr. Angela Beale Tawfeeq, Director of Education and Research for Diversity in Aquatics and a member of the American Red Cross Scientific Advisory Aquatic Council
Coach Malachi and Olivia Cunningham, lifelong educators, founders and leaders of the former Philadelphia Tigershark Swim Club
Jim Ellis, famed Philadelphia Swim Coach, founder of PDR Swim Club and the subject of the feature film Pride starring Terrence Howard
Maritza Correia McClendon, the first Puerto Rican of African descent to be a member of the U.S. Olympic swimming team
Cullen Jones, the first African-American to hold a world record in swimming
Bruce Wigo, Swimmer, historian, writer, former CEO of U.S.A. Water Polo, and former CEO of The International Swimming Hall of Fame
Anthony Patterson, Sr., President, Nile Swim Club in Yeadon, PA, the oldest Black-owned swim club in the U.S.
Sabir Muhammad, the first African-American to win a medal at a major international swimming competition
Kevin Colquitt, swimmer, historian and writer