For some people, swimming is done just a few times a year to cool off during the hot summer months. For Bob and Kathy Hubbard, the sport of swimming has become a lifelong passion and dedication. And it’s a dedication they recently were honored for by the United States Swim School Association (USSSA) at its 29th annual National Conference.
The Hubbards were presented with the association’s first-ever Lifetime Achievement Award.
The award was created to honor and recognize those that have dedicated their lives to the learn-to-swim industry, giving of their time and talents to develop strong swim schools and help save lives.
The Hubbards, who are the founders of the Hubbard Family Swim Schools, opened their first school in Phoenix in 1998 after years of running swim programs and summer sports camp at the Phoenix Swim Club. Bob grew up in New York and developed his passion for swimming while working as a beach lifeguard. Kathy developed her love for swimming in a competitive environment, qualifying for the 1968 Olympic Trials and swimming competitively through college.
Kathy served as chairman of the USSSA Infant Toddler Committee for 10 years, working to develop a robust training program for infant swimming instructors. Bob has been involved with USSSA since 1998, as a board member including holding the office of president. Both Bob and Kathy are presenters of the USSSA Infant Toddler Instructor course in addition to conducting other sessions at various USSSA conferences.
The Hubbards have also become international expert speakers in the field of infant and toddler swimming. They were three-time keynote speakers for the Australian Swim Coaches & Teachers Association and they spoke at the World Aquatic Baby Conference in Malmo, Sweden & Wellington, New Zealand as well as at the Birthlight Conference in Cambridge, England.
“Bob and Kathy’s contributions to the swimming community over the decades are immeasurable,” said USSSA Executive Director Lisa Zarda. “They have touched thousands of lives teaching children to swim, dedicated hours of their own time to develop quality training programs for instructors and opened their doors to countless swim school owners to share best practices. I cannot think of two people more deserving of this honor.”
There currently are three Hubbard Family Swim Schools across the Valley, including 13832 N. 32nd St., and all the swim schools offer lessons to babies and children, eight weeks up to 12 years of age. For more information, visit www.hubbardswim.com.