Long Beach Aquatic Capital of America Foundation Names Swimmer Jessica Hardy Aquatic Athlete of the Year

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Swimmer Jessica Hardy was named the 2011 Long Beach Aquatic Athlete of the Year at an awards dinner and fundraiser hosted by the Long Beach Aquatic Capital of America Foundation last Thursday night, Nov. 10th.

Hardy was honored for capturing the world title in the 50 meter breaststroke and taking a silver medal in the 4×100 meter freestyle relay at the FINA World Championships in Shanghai this summer. Three days later, she was crowned U.S. National champion by winning the 100 meter breaststroke in Palo Alto, Calif.

Hardy’s parents, Denise and Bill Robinson, accepted the award on the Long Beach native’s behalf as the swimmer was competing in the Minneapolis Grand Prix, the first leg of the 2011-12 USA Swimming Grand Prix Series.

Also honored Thursday by the Long Beach Aquatic Capital of America Foundation were Long Beach City Manager Pat West as the inaugural Long Beach Aquatic Citizen of Year, the Long Beach Yacht Club for its contributions to amateur and competitive sailing, the Long Beach Sailing Foundation for its community outreach program, and the Greater Long Beach YMCA for its commitment to water safety programs.

The Aquatic Capital Foundation dinner raised funds to aid the organization’s efforts to support local youth aquatics and “water proofing” Long Beach youth; refurbish and improve local facilities; improve access to pool and water related activities, and provide aquatic scholarships. Keesal, Young & Logan hosted the dinner as a Gold Athlete Sponsor, and Farmers & Merchants Bank and The Port of Long Beach contributed as Silver Table Sponsors. Bronze Foundation Sponsors for the event were Alex Bellehumeur, Coldwell Banker Commercial BLAIR WESTMAC, John Fielder & Donita Van Horik, Jacobsen Pilot Service, McCormick Divers, The Shadden Group, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney, SA Recycling and the Long Beach Sailing Foundation.

The Aquatic Capital Foundation’s membership includes boaters, rowers and kayakers, swimmers, divers and water poloists, marine enthusiasts, and business professionals who commit thousands of hours annually organizing and promoting aquatic sports and events in Long Beach.

For additional information, please visit the foundation’s website at http://aquaticcapital.org.

About The Long Beach Aquatic Capital of America Foundation
The mission of the Long Beach Aquatic Capital of America Foundation is to communicate and promote Long Beach as an aquatic destination for business, education and sports on a local, national and international basis. The Foundation’s strategic initiatives are to support aquatic events, clean water and water conservation efforts; and lead fundraising efforts to support local youth aquatics and “water proofing” Long Beach youth, refurbish and improve local facilities, improve access to pool and water related activities, and provide aquatic scholarships.

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