The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) is the parent organization to IMSHOF covering all aquatics.
Joe Grossman, 1970
Commander Gerald Forsberg, OBE, Master Mariner, FNI, Royal Navy (Retired), 1971
William Forrest "Buck" Dawson, 1972
Willy Van Rysel, 1973
Jerry Nason, 1974
Audrey Scott, 1975
Ray Scott, 1975
Traversée internationale du lac St-Jean, 1976
Conrad Wennerberg, 1977
Charles "Red" Silvia, 1978
Dennis Matuch, 1979
Not awarded 1980-2001
James Doty, 2002
British Long Distance Swimming Association, 2003
Roger Parsons, 2004
Val Parsons, 2004
Lynn Blouin, 2005
Dale Petranech, 2006
Silvia Beatríz Dalotto, 2007
Shelley Taylor-Smith, 2008
Michael P. Read, MBE, 2009
Christopher Guesdon, 2010
Steven Muñatones, 2011
Drury Gallagher, 2012
Ned Denison, 2013
Melissa Cunningham, 2014
Dennis Miller, 2015
David Yudovin, 2016
Richard Broer, 2017
Stéphane Lecat, 2018
Sue Guesdon, 2019
S.A. "Sid" Cassidy, 2020
Colin Hill, 2021
Elizabeth Fry, 2022
The Irving Davids/Captain Roger Wheeler Memorial Award was established in 1970 by the New England Marathon Swimming Association (NEMSA) and to honor and recognize those making major contribution to open water swimming and serve as a perpetual memorial to Irving Davids and Captain Roger Wheeler.
NEMSA is the oldest organization in the USA dedicated solely to open water/marathon swimming with the goals: to promote amateur open water swims and races; to promote water safety, research water pollution and clean water (including the effects on aquatic life), and to encourage the publishing of papers and other information materials related to open water swimming and the environment.
NEMSA accomplishments include: organization and conduct of the Boston Light House Swim (first held in 1909); contribute materials and other memorabilia on open water/marathon swimming to the New England Sports Museum and Library; assist in the development and distribution of safety equipment for open water swimmers; and make major contribution to the Massachusetts Audubon Society and assist in creating a data base for their water related research projects.
The names of the recipients of the award are inscribed on a beautiful large silver tray that International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame (IMSHOF) Honoree James Doty secured from the Taylor Corman Jewelry Store in Brookline, Massachusetts. It is a major award of the International Swimming Hall of Fame and displayed in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida museum. Each winner received a small silver bowl or plate to commemorate their award. Once the tray is fully engraved, future recipients will be included on an adjacent plaque.
Initially a committee consisting of IMSHOF Honorees: Joe Grossman, Dennis Matuch, Buck Dawson, and James Doty selected the award winners. The award was presented annually from 1970 through 1979. For unknown reason, the award was not presented from 1980 to 2001 and the tray was just another bit of history on the museum walls of the International Swimming Hall of Fame. In 2001, it was reestablished and IMSHOF now selects and presents a winner at their annual Induction and Awards Ceremony.
Irving Davids was an open water/marathon swimming historian and archivist. He pioneered the study of tides and currents and was invaluable in plotting proper courses. His private collection of photographs and newspaper clippings on professional marathon swimming was unparalleled. He served as trainer for IMSHOF Honoree Regent LaCoursiere, from Quebec.
Captain Roger W. Wheeler from Rhode Island was an outgoing, charismatic race organizer and marathon swimmer administrator. He used his considerable political connections (creator of the Rhode Island State Life-Saving system in the 1930s and is also the namesake of a state beach in Rhode Island) to secure funds and recognition for local marathon swimming races including course design and publicity to ensure large crowds to watch the races. These included: the John E Fogarty Memorial Distance Swim on 24 August 1968 and the 26.7-mile (42.9 km) America's Marathon Swim in 1970. Both were sanctioned by the World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation. Doty announced the award at the 1970 race.
Davids and Wheeler died within a year of each other in the late1960’s. They still serve as examples and role models for the administrators and organizers in the sport of open water swimming.
Award Winners at 2018 Ceremony: from left - Melissa Cunningham, Val Parsons, Richard Brower, Stéphane Lecat, Michael P. Read, MBE, Beth Yudovin [for David], Ned Denison and Chris Guesdon
The Poseidon Award recognizes high level achievement from personal effort or initiative in a field of endeavor that contributes to the performance of marathon swimmers or to the development and status of Marathon Swimming to the world. The winner is decided by the IMSHOF Selectors.
The Organising Committee of the Global Open Water Swimming Conference, 2013
Not awarded 2014 & 2015
Chloë McCardel, 2016
Steven Muñatones, 2017
Christopher Guesdon, 2018
Michael P. Read, MBE, 2019
Petar Stoychev, 2020
Sarah Thomas, 2021
Shelley Taylor-Smith, 2022
Chloë McCardel at the 2016 Ceremony
(Presented by Bruce Wigo CEO of ISHOF)
Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes the lifetime dedication and achievements in the swimming community.
Greta Andersen, 2015 (Presented by Bruce Wigo CEO of ISHOF on left and IMSHOF Honoree Ned Denison)
Service Award is given periodically to an individual who has selflessly volunteered their time, energy and/or resources to advance the interests and work of the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
Dale Petranech, 2019
Presidential Award is conferred in recognition of an extraordinary or exceptional achievement to promote the mission of the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
Bob Duenkel, 2004
Lewis Pugh, OIG, 2011
Gold Medallion Award is presented each year to a former competitive swimmer for his or her national or international significant achievements in the field of science, entertainment, art, business, education, or government.
Dr. James “Doc” Counsilman, 1990
Jim Moran, 1994
James Whelan, 1999
Buck Dawson Authors Award is presented to the author of an aquatics - related book for which the book’s content has had a profound educational or entertaining impact on the aquatic disciplines or population in general. The dates below are the book publishing year and presented in alphabetic order.
Dr. James “Doc” Counsilman, 1968 & 1977
Lynne Cox, Honourable Mention 2004 & 2006
William Forrest "Buck" Dawson, Inspired the award
Penny Lee Dean, 1998
Dr. Jane Katz, 1981, 1985, 1993 & 1996
Annette Kellerman, Honourable Mention 1918
Diana Nyad, Honourable Mention 1978
Conrad Wennerberg, Honourable Mention 1974
Al Schoenfield Media Award
Diana Nyad, 2002 (at ISHOF event)
G. Harold Martin Award is presented for long and exceptional leadership, insight and dedication to the water safety of children and the cause of making Every Child A Swimmer.
Dr. Jane Katz, 2016
Paragon Awards are sponsored by Pentair Aquatic Systems and are presented for outstanding contributions to: Competitive Swimming, Water Polo, Competitive Diving, Aquatic Safety, Synchronized Swimming and Recreational Swimming.
Dr. Jane Katz, 1999 & 2009
S.A. "Sid" Cassidy, 2014