June 7, 2020
Kathleen Prindle/ CEO/Head Coach, Performance Aquatics
To Our PAQ Family,
In light of the continued outpouring of grief and anger sweeping the country, I wanted to reach out to you. We at PAQ stand in solidarity with every person traumatized by racist acts, who regularly face ignorance and aggression with courage and resilience. We stand in solidarity with the families of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, Tony McDade, and tragically, too many individuals to name. We unequivocally affirm that Black Lives Matter and we stand in solidarity with everyone fighting to end racism, to secure justice, and to protect our community safety.
Our world is fundamentally scarred by the misuse of human freedom. Nowhere is this more evident than in the long, jagged scar of racism and prejudice across the face of human and American history. Through the pain and chaos, we are given the opportunity to do better, and become part of the change that the world so desperately needs. I am privileged to lead PAQ and help teach our next generation of leaders: We are building a team that truly embodies our core values of inclusivity and respect, under the umbrella of “swim training”. I will continue to use our platform and our voices here to drive change. It is at the very heart of our mission, and we pursue this effort every day, in ways both large and small.
I am sure by now you realize that PAQ is an organization that champions equality, diversity, and inclusion and is willing to stand up for those values when they are threatened. We are pleased with some of the impacts we have made in swimming such as our success in creating a DEI (Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion) Board position in governance and raising awareness and funding for DEI initiatives. We have led the governing bodies of Olympic sports towards athlete inclusion by authoring the very first Regulations and Policies for gender-diverse swimmers, adopted by our 400,000 membership in 2018. Small steps.
We can do much more.
Coaching has taught me that any sort of growth - from learning into action - takes time, intentionality, and persistence. We at PAQ commit to working together to deepen our awareness of the ways in which we can help affect positive change and continue efforts to make this country a place where all people are safe from oppression. I am confident that in the coming summer, season, year, and quad, PAQ will embrace and grow from our shared reflection on this time in our history. While we are far from perfect, we are a team that genuinely cares for one another, and cares about our values of “Equity, Inclusion, Sportsmanship, and Kindness to others”, as recently defined by our Junior Groups during our Team Pandemic Workshops.
These are extraordinarily difficult times. There are no simple solutions. My sincere hope is that we will all work together toward a better future - I pray that this summer will be one of peace and growing justice in our world and in our hearts.
Thank You All,