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Penny Lee Dean, EdD to Receive the 2024 Poseidon Award

The International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) will recognize Penny Lee Dean, EdD for her high-level achievement in marathon swimming with its 2024 Poseidon Award.  

The Award will be presented to Dr. Dean during the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame Induction and Award Ceremony on Saturday May 18th 2024 in Cancun México. 

The Poseidon Award is presented annually by the International Swimming Hall of Fame to the organization or individual for 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.

Ned Denison, chairperson of the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame, explains, “This year’s award honors Penny.  She delivered high level achievements as a marathon swimmer: won 1 Major (1979 World Professional Marathon Swimming Federation title) and other prestigious professional marathon swimming races, set 2 overall Catalina Channel speed records which both still stand more than 40 years later (one-way and two-way crossings), set the overall English Channel speed record at 7 hours 40 minutes which stood for 16 years (until she coached Chad Hundeby to break her own record) and female record which stood for 28 years.

Steven Munatones added, “Penny was and is phenomenal. She was competitive as an athlete, coach, and even as an administrator as she fought for every budget item and opportunity for athletes. Her dedication was off the charts. She vowed to herself to break the English Channel record at the age of 10 when she got cold swimming across the Golden Gate Bridge – and did 13 years later by shattering the existing record by 1 hour 5 minutes.

She lived very much inland in Southern California, far away from the ocean, but she would spend hours on the freeway driving to her workouts in the pool and the Pacific. Her 36,000 meter pool workouts at a 1:20 pace per 100 meters reframed what was possible in training – and therefore, she reframed what was possible in the water. She is a special individual and the sport is very fortunate to have her as a champion, record holder, intensely dedicated coach, author, educator, historian, role model, and icon.”

Penny Dean is shown above on left with fellow members of the Catalina Channel Swimming Federation at the induction ceremonies at the United Nations in June 2011 with Dale PetranechJohn YorkLinda BamfordPaula SelbyDavid Clark and Carol Sing. She is shown in Lake Windermere, England as a coach of Cindy Patterson, and Steven Munatones.

Poseidon Award Recipients

© 2023 Daily News of Open Water Swimming

to educate, enthuse, and entertain all those who venture beyond the shoreline

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