WOWSA Awards

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Stephen Redmond, 2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year after finishing one of the Oceans Seven channels. Photo by Mike Lewis
Drury Gallagher at the United Nations, photo by Skip Storch
Catalina Channel Swimming Federation representatives at the United Nations
noun - The WOWSA Awards, sponsored by the World Open Water Swimming Association, is an annual recognition of the world's best open water swimmers in 4 categories (World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year, World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year).

Contents

Voting

The WOWSA Awards are given at the annual Global Open Water Swimming Conference and voted online upon by tens of thousands of swimmers and fans in a public poll.

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Categories

Nominations

The nominees for the World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year, World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year, World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year and the World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year are always an heroic and amazing group of individuals with exceptionally inspirational exploits, histories and lifestyles. The WOWSA Awards not necessarily for the best athlete, but are meant to honor the men and women who:

Locations

WOWSA Awards Recipients

World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year

World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year

World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year

World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year

Nominees

2013 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees

1. Alexander Brylin, Ice Swimmer from Siberia (Russia)
2. Damián Blaum, Around The World Marathoner (Argentina)
3. Darren Miller, Achieving the Oceans Seven (U.S.A.)
4. Doug Woodring, Energetic Environmentalism (Hong Kong)
5. Glen Christiansen, Recovering from Trauma (Sweden)
6. Jim McConica, Ageless Wonder (U.S.A.)
7. Jose Diaz, Horizontes Sin Fronteras (Spain)
8. Mally Richards, 60 Years In The Making (South Africa)
9. Oussama Mellouli, Olympic Ambassador (Tunisia)
10. Pádraig Mallon, Extraordinaire Event Director & Swimmer (Ireland)
11. Rafael Gutiérrez Mesa, Getting Things Strait in Gibraltar (Spain)
12. Thomas Lurz, World Champion (Germany)
13. Tomi Stefanovski, Mastering the Traversee (Macedonia)
14. Vojislav Mijić, Tirelessly Resilient Race Director (Serbia)
15. Wayne Riddin, Midmar Mile Miracle (South Africa)

2013 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year Nominees

1. Anna-Carin Nordin, The Oceans Seven First (Sweden)
2. Charlotte Brynn, Channel Swimmer and Aquatic Adventurist (New Zealand)
3. Diana Nyad, Xtreme Dreamer (U.S.A.)
4. Kimberley Chambers, Ballerina Soars in the Open Water (New Zealand)
5. Lorna Cochran, Near-nonagenarian Navigates Nirvana (South Africa)
6. Lynn Kubasek, Volunteer Extraordinaire In The Pacific (U.S.A.)
7. Martina Grimaldi, World Champion Racer (Italy)
8. Michelle Macy, Reaching the Summit of the Oceans Seven (U.S.A.)
9. Nadia Ben Bahtane, A Maternal Moroccan Miracle (Morocco)
10. Nuala Moore, Going to the Extremes (Ireland)
11. Olga Kozydub, Professional Marathon Swimming Champion (Russia)
12. Poliana Okimoto, 3-time World Championship Medalist (Brazil)
13. Sarah Thomas, Double Crosser (U.S.A.)
14. Sally Minty-Gravett, 5 Decades in the Making (Jersey)
15. Shelley Taylor-Smith, Serving with Distinction (Australia)

2013 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominees

1. BCT Gdynia Marathon, Prizing the Pros (Poland)
2. Bering Strait Swim, Crossing from Asia to America (International)
3. Emily Brunemann, FINA World Cup Winner (U.S.A.)
4. Héctor Ramírez Ballesteros, Battling Butterfly From Spain to Gibraltar (Spain)
5. Ka'iwi Channel Swim, Making the Most of Molokai (Hawaii)
6. Mateusz Sawrymowicz, The Polish Tiburon (Poland)
7. Melissa Cunningham, Every Stroke Counts (Australia)
8. Mohamed Marouf, Energizing Egypt (Egypt)
9. Ned Denison, 9 Swims Around The World (Ireland)
10. Night Train Swimmers, California Coastal Cruising (U.S.A.)
11. Richard Weinberger, Chasing Gold (Canada)
12. Swim4Good, Strait of Gibraltar Charity Crossing (Mexico/U.S.A./Spain)
13. Sylvain Estadieu, Flying Frenchman (France)
14. Wendy Trehiou, Two-way Toughness (Jersey)
15. Women’s 10K World Championship, Pack Finishing Fast (International)

2013 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year Nominees

1. 21 Yaks and A Speedo, Storytelling Life Lessons by Lewis Pugh (U.K.)
2. Amphibia Sports Ring, Simple Silicone Solution For Swimmers (Ireland)
3. Bold & Beautiful, A Pod by the Shore (Australia)
4. Driven, Documenting Distance and Dedication (U.S.A.)
5. FINIS Agility Paddles, Training Tools of the Trade (U.S.A.)
6. Global Open Water Swimming Conference, Culminating In Cork (Ireland)
7. International Ice Swimming Association, Cooling To The Extreme (South Africa)
8. Ocean-navi, Navigating Throughout The Pacific (Japan)
9. Ocean Swimming & Prone Paddleboarding for Athletes with Spinal Cord Injuries (U.S.A.)
10. Open Water Swimming Manual: An Expert's Survival Guide by Lynne Cox (U.S.A.)
11. Oru Kayak, Origami of the Open Water (U.S.A.)
12. Ouma Academy, Swimming The Sea (Tunisia)
13. Plastic Disclosure Project by Ocean Recovery Alliance (Hong Kong)
14. Santa Barbara Channel Swimming Association, Far Forward Thinking In The Ocean (U.S.A.)
15. Swim Smooth, Styling Streamlined Swimming (Australia/U.K.)

2012 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees

1. Benjamin Schulte (Guam) – Fearless Olympic Marathoner
2. Craig Dietz (USA) – The Limbless Waterman
3. Colin Hill (Great Britain) – Olympic Showman
4. Doug Woodring (Hong Kong) – Ocean Environmentalist
5. Milko van Gool (Netherlands) – Humanitarian Swimmer
6. Oussama Mellouli (Tunisia) – Olympic Champion
7. Pierre Lafontaine (Canada) – Able & Ambitious Administrator
8. Ram Barkai (South Africa) – Mindful Ice Man
9. Salvatore Cimmino (Italy) – Swimming the Seas of the World
10. Stephen Redmond (Ireland) - Oceans Seven Pioneer
11. Thomas Lurz (Germany) - Ambassador and Gentleman
12. Trent Grimsey (Australia) - English Channel Record Breaker
13. Wayne Riddin (South Africa) – Midmar Mile Director
14. Wayne Soutter (South Africa) – The Unthinkable
15. Yunfeng Wang (Taiwan) – Sun Lake Moon Director

2012 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year Nominees

1. Ana Marcela Cunha (Brazil), World Professional Marathon Champion
2. Anna-Carin Nordin (Sweden), Oceans Seven Swimmer
3. Annaleise Carr (Canada), Young Marathon Swimmer
4. Catherine Vogt (USA), Dual Olympic Coach
5. Diana Nyad (USA), Xtreme Dreamer
6. Esther Nuñez Morera (Spain), Professional Marathon Swimming Champion
7. Grace van der Byl (USA), Marathon Record Breaker
8. Janel Jorgensen McArdle (USA), Swim Across America President
9. Julia Washbourne (Hong Kong), Eco-Swimming Aquapreneur
10. Karen Gaffney (USA), Swimming Philanthropist
11. Keri-Anne Payne (Great Britain), British Open Water Icon
12. Pat Gallant-Charette (USA), Channel Swimming Late Bloomer
13. Risztov Éva (Hungary), Olympic Champion
14. Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia), Pioneering Administrator
15. Tina Neill (USA), San Clemente Channel Swimmer

2012 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominees

1. Alina Warren (Scotland), Swimming Great Glen Way
2. Brenton Williams (South Africa), Deep Blue Flying
3. Dan Projansky (USA), Flying Down The Red River
4. Dutch Ladies First (Netherlands), English Channel Relay Record
5. Frank Flowers (Cayman Islands), Blossoming In The Cayman Islands
6. Haley Anderson (USA), Silver Lining At the Olympics
7. James Pittar (Australia), Shelley Beach Swim
8. Juan Ignacio Martínez Fernández-Villamil (Spain), The Heart of Navia
9. Lexie Kelly (USA), Open Water Swimming Archivist
10. Night Train Swimmers (USA/New Zealand), SF to SB Relay
11. Penny Palfrey (Australia), Marathon Adventurer
12. Philippe Croizon (France), Bering Strait Crossing
13. Saint Martin Island Long Distance Channel Swimming in Bangladesh
14. Stephen Redmond (Ireland), Tsugaru Channel Crossing
15. Trent Grimsey (Australia), English Channel Record

2012 World Open Water Swimming Offering of the Year Nominees

1. Big River Man by Martin Strel
2. Channel Swimmers' Chat Group by Nick Adams
3. Cork Distance Week by Ned Denison
4. FINIS SwiMP3 X18 by John Mix
5. Foggle by Karen Smidt-Allard
6. Open Water Swimming Insurance by Travis England
7. In My Element by Theodore Yach
8. iSwimToo by Stephen Coulter
9. Marathon Swimmers Forum by Evan Morrison & Donal Buckley
10. Midmar Mile Facebook Integration by Wayne Riddin
11. Night Train Swimmers by Vito Bialla
12. Ocean Care Solutions by Ron Adley
13. Oceans Seven Project by Red Bull Media House
14. RC Helicam by Andrew Martens
15. SWIM Channel by Patrick Wrinkler
16. SwimIT by Rick Senn
17. SwimPhone by Club Assistant
18. SwimTrek by Simon Murie
19. TakeItLive by Chris Lundie
20. Toa o le Tai Program by Bruckner Chase
21. The Henley Swim by Tom Kean

2011 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees

1. Roger Allsopp (Great Britain) – Barrier-Breaker
2. Bruckner Chase (USA) – Ocean Advocacy and Awareness Visionary
3. Salvatore Cimmino (Italy) – Champion of the Disabled
4. Spyridon Gianniotis (Greece) – World Professional Marathon Swimming Champion
5. Simon Griffiths (Great Britain) – Open Water Swimming Publisher Visionary
6. Thomas Lurz (Germany) – World Professional Marathon Swimming Champion
7. Simon Murie (Great Britain) – Open Water Swimming Tour Operator and Enabler
8. Jamie Patrick (USA) – Adventure Swimmer
9. Stephen Redmond (Ireland) – Courageous Channel Challenger
10. Yutaka Shinozaki (Japan) – Founder of the Japan International Open Water Swimming Association
11. Petar Stoychev (Bulgaria) – World Professional Marathon Swimming Champion
12. Doug Woodring (Hong Kong) – Ocean Recovery Alliance Visionary

2011 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year Nominees

1. Ana Marcela Cunha (Brazil) – World Marathon Swimming Champion
2. Pamela Dickson (New Zealand) – Lady of the Lake
3. Elizabeth Fry (USA) – Two Times Makes Double
4. Pat Gallant-Charette (USA) – Nursing Marathon Excellence
5. Pilar Geijo (Argentina) – World Professional Marathon Swimming Champion
6. Charlene Wittstock, Her Serene Highness The Princess of Monaco – A Royal Supporter
7. Marcy MacDonald (USA) – Freestyling Foot Doctor
8. Angela Maurer (Germany) – Mother of Marathoners
9. Anna-Carin Nordin (Sweden) – Swedish Aloha In The Channels
10. Diana Nyad (USA) – Inspiration and Determination Redux
11. Penny Palfrey (Australia) – Marathon Swimmer Extraordinaire
12. Keri-Anne Payne (Great Britain) – World Champion and Olympic Favorite

2011 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominees

1. 1400K Swim Across Tunisia (Tunisia) – Swimmer of Peace and Bridge Builder
2. Colleen Blair (Scotland) – Swimming Across the Graveyard of Ships
3. Bridging The Cayman Islands (Cayman Islands) – Captivating Channel Challenge
4. Farallon Islands Swimming Association (USA) – Enabling a Renaissance In San Francisco
5. Julie Galloway (Ireland) – Record-setting Marathon Swimmer
6. Ray Gandy (USA) – Two Days in the Bay
7. Japan to Taiwan Ocean Swim Challenge (Japan – Taiwan) – Bridge Across Troubled Waters
8. Swann Oberson (Switzerland) – Switzerland’s First World Champion
9. Patagonia Extreme Cold Water Challenge (Chile and Argentina) – Adventure at the Tip of South America
10. Progetto Adriatico (Italy to Albania) – Learn To Be Free
11. Rebekah Boscariol (Canada) – Swimming for SickKids
12. The Swim (United Kingdom) – Charity Relay Across the Irish Sea
13. Selina Moreno Pasagali (Spain) – Marathon Swimming Cancer Survivor
14. Special Olympics World Summer Games (Greece) – A Special Global Catalyst of Good
15. A Swim For The CoastlinesUn Nado Por Las Costas (Dominican Republic) – Coastal Cleanup Crowds
16. Windermere 12-way Warriors (England) – Dozen Times Better
17. Forrest Nelson (USA) – Courageous Channel Circumnavigation

2010 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees

1. Captain Earl Sandvik (USA), Pilot and Volunteer Extraordinaire
2. Chad Ho (South Africa), Pro Swimmer
3. Chris Palfrey (Australia), Record Setting Marathon Swimmer
4. Dave Barra (USA), Master Marathoner
5. Lewis Pugh (Great Britain), Environmentalist and Pioneer Swimmer
6. Marcos Díaz (Dominican Republic), Humanitarian Swimmer
7. Michael Oram (Great Britain), Escort Pilot Extraordinaire
8. Ned Denison (Ireland), Administrator, Coach, Educator
9. Nino Fazio (Italy), Passionate Open Water Promoter
10. Petar Stoychev (Bulgaria), World Champion Professional Swimmer
11. Valerio Cleri(Italy), World Champion
12. Ventura Deep Six Relay (USA), World Record Holders

2010 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year Nominees

1. Ana Marcela Cunha (Brazil), Professional Marathon Swimmer
2. Angela Maurer (Germany), Professional Marathon Swimmer
3. Anne Marie Ward (Ireland), North Channel Swimmer
4. Barbara Held (USA), Pacific Channel Swimmer
5. Diana Nyad (USA), Pioneer
6. Eva Fabian (USA), World Champion
7. Freda Streeter (Great Britain), Channel Motivator and Educator
8. Jackie Cobell (Great Britain), Endurer
9. Linsy Heister (Netherlands), World and European Champion
10. Mighty Mermaids (USA), Masters Team Extraordinaire
11. Penny Palfrey (Australia), Adventure Swimmer
12. Sue Oldham (Australia), Youthfully-minded Channel Swimmer

2010 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominees

1. Alex Meyer (USA), World 25K Champion
2. Chloe McCardel (Australia), Two-Way Channel Swimmer
3. Damme-Brugge Race Organizers (Belgium), 100th Year Anniversary
4. Finy Fichera (Italy), Sicilian Channel Master
5. Ian van der Hulst (Netherlands), Record-Setter
6. Jamie Patrick (USA), Endurance Athlete
7. John Van Wisse (Australia), Two-Way Channel Swimmer
8. Lewis Pugh (Great Britain), Environmentalist and Pioneer Swimmer
9. Marcellus Wiley (USA), Swimming Advocate
10. Marcelo Collet (Brazil), Paralympic Channel Swimmer
11. Mexican American Unity Swim (Mexico/USA), World Record Lake Relay
12. Miguel Vadillo (Mexico), LOST Swimmer
13. Penny Palfrey (Australia), Aquatic Adventurer
14. Philippe Croizon (France), Amputee Channel Swimmer
15. Rachel Golub, Patricia Sener, Cristian Vergara (USA / Chile), Cold-Water Swimmers
16. Rob Dumouchel (USA), Open Water Documentarist
17. Spyridon Gianniotis, Antonios Fokaidis and Kalliopi Araouzou (Greece), European Victors
18. Stephen Redmond (Ireland), North Channel Swimmer
19. Swim 22 (USA), Four-Way Channel Swimmers
20. Ventura Deep Six Relay (USA), Non-Stop Ocean World Record Holders
21. Vojislav Mijic (Serbia), Extraordinary Promoter and Organizer

2009 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees

1. Flavio Bomio (Switzerland), European & Global Administrator
2. Colin Hill (Great Britain), Visionary Innovator and Successful Promoter
3. Thomas Lurz (Germany), World Champion Professional Swimmer
4. Kevin Murphy (Great Britain), Hall of Famer King of the Channel
5. Bob Placak (USA), Generous Visionary and Promoter
6. Scott Rice (New Zealand), Innovator and Branding Expert
7. Rostislav Vitek (Czech Republic), Fast Channel Swimmer
8. Rick Walker (USA), Quick-thinking FINA Referee and Long-time Coach
9. Douglas Woodring (Hong Kong), Race Innovator and Ocean Protector
10. Petar Stoychev (Bulgaria), World Professional Champion

2009 World Open Water Swimming Woman of the Year Nominees

1. Marcia Cleveland (USA), Administrator, Promoter and Coach
2. Lisa Cummins (Ireland), Patience and Persistence Pay Off
3. Natalie du Toit (South Africa), Inspirational Athlete and Spokeswoman
4. Melissa Gorman (Australia), World Champion
5. Angela Maurer (Germany), Professional Swimmer and Mother
6. Mighty Mermaids (USA), Masters Team Extraordinaire
7. Sally Minty-Gravett (Jersey), Teacher, Motivator and Coach
8. Penny Palfrey (Australia), Marathon Swimming Adventurer
9. Keri-Anne Payne (Great Britain), World-class Racer
10. Poliana Okimoto (Brazil), World Professional Marathon Champion

2009 World Open Water Swimming Performance of the Year Nominees

1. 120 km Lake Taupo triple-crossing in New Zealand (Julie Bradshaw, Lucy Roper, Michelle Macy, Barbara Pellick, Penny Palfrey, Heather Osborn + Steve Junk, Chris Palfrey, Stephen Spence, Dougal Hunt, Mark Cockroft)
2. Ram Barkai and Andrew Chin’s 2.2 km winter swim in Lake Zurich
3. Riaan Schoeman’s one-second victory over Chad Ho in South Africa’s Midmar Mile
4. Penny Palfrey’s 14 hour 51 minute 70K (43-mile) Alenuihaha Channel crossing from the Big Island of Hawaii to Maui
5. Melissa Gorman’s 5 km victory at the FINA World Swimming Championships in Italy
6. Angela Maurer’s 25 km victory at the FINA World Swimming Championships
7. Tasmin Powell’s 11 hour 34 minute 70 km Round Jersey circumnavigation
8. Chantelle Le Guilcher’s 10 hour 37 minute 70 km Round Jersey circumnavigation
9. Keri-Anne Payne's 10 km victory at the FINA World Swimming Championships in Italy
10. Thomas Lurz’s double victory in the 5 km and 10 km races at the FINA World Swimming Championships
11. Petar Stoychev’s 6 hour 58 minute victory in the 32 km Traversée Internationale du lac St-Jean
12. Valerio Cleri’s 25 km victory at the FINA World Swimming Championships
13. Rostislav Vitek’s crossing of the English Channel in 7 hours 16 minutes
14. Jade Scognamillo’s 19 hour 59 minute 52 km crossing of Canada’s Lake Ontario
15. Kane Radford’s victory in the US$10,000 RCP Tiburon Mile in San Francisco Bay
16. Liz Fry’s 11 hour 41 minute reverse 48 km circumnavigation of Manhattan Island 17 hours 48 minutes
17. Liane Llewellyn’s 27 hour 35 minute double-crossing of the English Channel
18. Lisa Cummins’ 35 hour 31 minute double-crossing of the English Channel
19. Karen Rogers’ 10 hour 50 minute 21.5-mile crossing of Lake Tahoe in California
20. Patti Bauernfeind’s 10 hour 38 minute 21.5-mile crossing of Lake Tahoe in California
21. Julian Crabtree’s 44-mile stage swim during the 4-part Great Swim

2008 World Open Water Swimming Man of the Year Nominees

1. Dmitrij Belov (Russia), National Team Coach
2. Emilio Casanueva (USA/Chile), Sanctioning Body President
3. Sid Cassidy (USA), Chairman and Global Administrator
4. David Davies (UK), Cross-over Olympian
5. Sam Greetham, (Britain) LEN Open Water Committee Secretary and Director of British Swimming
6. Chad Ho (South Africa), Tough Teenager
7. Alex Kostich (USA), Master Extraordinaire
8. Thomas Lurz (Germany), Professional Swimmer
9. Randy Nutt (USA), Coach, Promoter and Race Director
10. Bob Placak (USA), Generous Visionary and Promoter
11. Scott Rice (New Zealand), Open Water Branding Expert
12. Petar Stoychev (Bulgaria), Record Holder
13. Douglas Woodring (Hong Kong), Race Innovator
14. Maarten van der Weijden (Netherlands), Olympic Champion

2008 World Open Water Swimming Women of the Year Nominees

1. Marcia Cleveland (USA), Administrator, Promoter and Coach
2. Natalie du Toit (South Africa), Inspirational Athlete and Spokeswoman
3. Jennifer Figge (USA), Atlantic Ocean Adventurer
4. Larisa Ilchenko (Russia), Olympic Champion
5. Britta Kamrau (Germany), Professional Marathon Swimmer
6. Angela Maurer (Germany), Olympian and Mother
7. Sandy Neilson-Bell (USA), Race Director and Promoter
8. Penny Palfrey (Australia), Marathon Swimming Adventurer
9. Shelley Taylor-Smith (Australia), Passionate Promoter and Global Administrator
10. Edith van Dijk (Netherlands), Open Water Swimming Legend
11. Zhange “Vivien” Liang (China), Beijing Olympic Volunteer Extraordinaire

2010 WOWSA Awards

The World Open Water Swimming Association sponsored and organized the 2010 WOWSA Awards that were held in conjunction with the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame induction ceremonies at the United Nations Building in New York City.

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