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Queens Announces 2017 Commencement Speaker

imageDavid Marsh
04/20/17 -  

Queens is pleased to announce that David Marsh, 2016 head coach for the U.S. Women's Olympic Swim Team and high performance director of Team Elite at SwimMAC Carolina, will be the keynote speaker at our May 6 commencement ceremony. He will provide words of encouragement to all graduate and undergraduate students earning their academic degrees.

Marsh has a personal connection the Queens community. He has coached several student-athletes at Team Elite who competed for their national teams at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games. Marsh has also worked alongside Jeff Dugdale, director of swimming operations at Queens, to help earn six national NCAA DII Swimming and Diving Championships.

As one of the most accomplished coaches in the world, David Marsh is the epitome of success in swimming-in Charlotte and around the globe. His impressive resume includes being an Olympic head coach, three-time Olympic assistant coach, nine-time NCAA National Coach of the Year, and 13-time SEC Coach of the Year. He has coached more than 49 Olympic athletes from 19 different countries. As women's US Olympic head coach of the 2016 Rio games, he led one of the most successful performances in games history based on medal count and records. 

A native of Miami, Florida, Marsh was himself a five-time All-American backstroker at Auburn University and the 1980 SEC backstroke champion, ranked sixth in the world at the time. He earned a degree in business administration in 1981 and he remained at his alma mater as an assistant coach until 1985. Prior to becoming the head coach at Auburn, Marsh led the Dynamo Swim Club in Atlanta, Ga., and Las Vegas Gold Swim Team in Las Vegas, Nevada. 

At Auburn, Marsh's teams won 12 national championships (7 men's and 5 women's) and 17 SEC Team titles--13 men's (10 of these consecutive) and 4 women's. He also developed 22 Olympians who won seven medals. Out of the pool, 200+ swimmers were chosen to the SEC Academic Honor Roll and 45 were named Academic All-Americans.

Intrigued by the way young swimmers were introduced to the sport, Marsh left an incredibly successful 17-year career at Auburn to join SwimMAC Carolina in 2007, where he became the Head Elite Coach and CEO of the United States Olympic Committee Center of Excellence. Marsh led SwimMAC to three consecutive USA club excellence championships, a first for any program. He helped develop a model system that cultivates both fast swimmers and good people, and his coaching philosophy encourages athletes to give an honest and complete effort to reach their God-given potential in their sport and in their studies. He believes in establishing patterns of success not only at the top levels of swimming, but also as a professional, a family member and a quality citizen. He modeled these same principles with his coaching staff, and his current coaching tree (people who have coached for him as an assistant) has tallied 11 national titles of their own as current head coaches (Dave Durden, Cal Berkley, 3; Mike Bottom, Michigan, 1; Bill Pilzuk, SCAD, 1; Jeff Dugdale, Queens, 6).

Marsh has been inducted into the Southwest High School, Indian River Community College, Auburn Swimming, and NC Swimming Halls of Fame. He serves on the boards of the American Swimming Coaches Association of America as well as the Championship Performance Advisory Board. He has also authored articles for publications such as Swimming Technique and has provided commentary on a series of swimming technique videos.

Marsh is married to the former Kristin Burke who was a swimmer at California-Berkeley. David and Kristin have three children; son Aaron and daughters Alyssa and Maddie.

Additional Commencement 2017 information can be found here.

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