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Parent Involvement - KW Swim Team

The KW Swim Team is a non-profit, year-round swim club. We are parent-operated by volunteers and parent-funded.

  • KW is part of two larger communities: Allegheny Mountain Swimming (AMS) and USA Swimming. We are committed to AMS to host two home swim meets per year.
  • Home swim meets are a large source of revenue which help sustain our operations. Revenue is needed to pay our excellent coaching staff, rent the pool facilities we use, pay for equipment, and more. The revenue we earn from hosting home meets also helps keep registration fees for our swimmers as low as possible.
  • We need about 150 volunteers to run each home swim meet and to serve on other KW committees to ensure that our meets and organization operate smoothly and strongly.
  • Your willingness to volunteer is critical and sends a message of support, responsibility and pride to your children.


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Amazon Smile | KW SwimmingMake “Fox Chapel Killer Whales” your Amazon Smile charity, and Amazon will donate a portion of your purchases to support our swim club. Simply shop Amazon using, and Amazon will donate 0.5% of the price of eligible purchases to the Killer Whales at no effort or cost to you. You can update or change your Amazon Smile charitable organization at any time.

Update your Amazon Smile Charity to the Fox Chapel Killer Whales today.


About the Volunteer Incentive Fee (VIF)

  • All KW Swim Team families are required to fulfill a certain number of volunteer requirements. Families who do not fulfill their volunteer requirements are charged a Volunteer Incentive Fee at the end of the season. (Just a reminder: In past years, the VIF was assessed at the beginning of the season and then reimbursed at the end of the season.)
  • During the season, all families are required to fulfill 4 volunteer credits. A volunteer credit is defined as volunteering at a meet/event or donating an item for concessions.
  • The VIF of $400 will be assessed at the end of the season for VIF credits not fulfilled. 1 VIF credit = $100 (subject to change, up to $400 for required and unfulfilled responsibilities).
  • If a family has already volunteered or made concessions donations at a home meet this past fall, those credits qualify and will be counted towards your total VIF credit for the season.
  • Review the jobs you’ve signed up for and your credits earned. (You must be signed into the website.)
  • If you have any questions regarding your remaining credits for the season, please feel free to contact us. Our meets are not possible without the support of our volunteers. As always, thank you for donating your time and goods!


How to Earn Back Your Volunteer Incentive Fee (VIF) - Three ways:

  1. You can earn back your VIF by serving at KW Home Meets.
  2. You can earn back your full VIF by becoming a Stroke & Turn Official.
  3. You can earn back your full VIF by serving in a Lead Volunteer role.


1. You can earn back your VIF by serving at KW Home Meets.

Before each home meet, the Volunteer Coordinator(s) will send an email asking families to sign up for home meet volunteer roles. We fill roles on a first-come, first-serve basis. To receive one credit ($100), you must work the entire session (which is around half a day) to get full credit. You must appear on time and remain until dismissed in order to receive your credit. Here are the volunteer roles available:

Use a stopwatch to time and record swimmers in one lane during their races. You will receive instruction for everything you need to know about timing and recording prior to the session. No prior experience required.

Head Timer
Prior experience as a Timer is required. Monitors timers for proper procedure. Serves as a back-up to Timers by starting two stopwatches for each race.

Place Judge
Record the order of finish for each race (as a backup for the automatic timing system).

Meet Marshal
Positioned on the pool deck and in hallways. Ensures safe warm-ups and monitors access to the pool. We need as many as eight marshals per meet session! No prior experience necessary.

Concession Sales
Work at the concession stand selling food and drinks. No prior experience necessary.

Concession Donations
Purchase and donate items (food and drinks) for sale at the concession stand. The maximum number of credits a family can earn for Concession Donations 1 of the 5 credits per year ($100 total). If you donate concession item(s), you must donate the exact item and quantity that is requested to receive your VIF.

Clean Up / Take Down
Help clean up and take down the meet as needed and patrol the meet area for trash and lost and found items. Provide deck relief or volunteer assistance. No prior experience necessary.

First Aid & Safety Person
Roaming volunteer to help with any safety and first aid issues and otherwise provide medical assistance. Must have experience in the medical field.

Hospitality & Check-In
Handle check-in of coaches and officials and assist with meals, snacks, and beverages for the coaches, officials, and volunteers. No prior experience necessary.

DAK Operator
Must be trained to run the DAK (computer timing system) or willing to be trained prior to the meet.

Heat Sheet and Other Sales
Sell heat sheets and manage sales for advertising (family and friends can pay to have congrats messages put on the scoreboard). No prior experience required.

Collect timer sheets, post-meet results, help as needed. No prior experience required.

Awards Table
Responsible for making ribbons and other awards. No prior experience required.

Note: During the season, additional volunteer roles (other than helping at home meets) to earn sessions/credits may open. For example, sometimes we need volunteers to help run and organize the Halloween Relays party, etc.

Review the jobs you’ve signed up for. (You must be signed into the website.)


2. You can earn back your full VIF by becoming a Stroke & Turn Official.

Swim meets simply could not happen without certified officials on deck to ensure that swimmers are following the proper stroke and turn rules for each event. Each swim club in AMS is required to maintain a minimum number of officials. We are always looking for people interested in starting out as a stroke and turn official. No prior experience is necessary!

If you are interested in learning more, please contact Margaret Haas, KW’s officials contact, at [email protected]


  • Your full Volunteer Incentive Fee is waived.
  • You receive a 20% registration fee discount after you complete Official Requirements.
  • You have a pool-side view of the meet instead of fighting for a crowded, hot seat in the stands.
  • You get to represent KW and help to ensure the team maintains its requisite number of registered officials.
  • You are directly involved in the sport your child(ren) love(s).
  • Free food! Officials get to eat for free while they are working!

What does it take to become a USA Swimming Stroke and Turn Official?

  • Before stepping on deck, you must complete two steps:
    • Register with AMS as an Apprentice Official. It’s free and lasts for 60 days. At the end of the 60 days, an Apprentice Official must register as a non-athlete member of USA Swimming. (KW covers the annual registration fee.)
    • Complete the online Athlete Protection Training found on the USA Swimming Web site.
  • Complete the USA Swimming Level 2 Background Check (for coaches and officials). There is a cost for this, which will be paid for by the team.
  • Complete and pass with a score of 85 percent the USA Swimming online Stroke and Turn Officials’ test. The test is open book and can be completed any time during the training, but you must pass the test before you are certified.
  • An apprentice official must shadow a USA Swimming official for six sessions. An apprentice can only satisfy one session per day and two of the required training sessions total at any one meet. Many officials say that this is the most important part of training because it’s “on the job” training. You are actually watching swimmers at a variety of ages and skill levels.
  • Attend an AMS Intro to Officiating clinic.

What are the requirements after becoming a USA Swimming Stroke and Turn Official?

  • Attend at least one clinic in every 18 months
  • Work twelve (12) sessions at AMS sanctioned meets (a minimum of five sessions at KW home meets in order to be eligible for the team’s official's discount) during the period September 1 through August 31. These can be either at either short-course or long-course pools.
  • Periodically retake the required exam(s).

Application to be an Apprentice Official

  1. Access the application here. This form must be submitted to Laura Hartman (AMS Registrar) and Kathy McFaden (Officials Chair) by the Tuesday before the first meet you plan to shadow.
  2. You must know the initial training session date/meet/location and include that information when submitting the form
  3. E-mail the completed form to [email protected] and copy [email protected]
  4. You will be notified once your application is processed. At that time, you must complete the Athlete Protection Training Course.
  5. Within 60 days of your initial training date, you must complete the USA Swimming Background Check and become a fully registered non-athlete member of USA Swimming. You can still continue your training if it is not yet completed, but after 60 days, you will not be permitted on deck without being registered.

Important Links

Please direct questions to Margaret Haas at [email protected]


3. You can earn back your full VIF by serving in a Lead Volunteer role.

Banquet / Picnic Coordinator

Plans and organizes the end of short course banquet, secures location and menu, facilities end of year gift for swimmers and coaches, plans and organizes the picnic in August before swim season starts.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Kara Agens

Concession Coordinator / Hospitality Coordinator

Secures donations of food for the concession stand for all home meets. Organizes and operates hospitality room for home meets for coaches and officials.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Beth Ruff

Fundraising Committee

Coordinates all fundraising activities and sees them through, to include heat sheets advertisement, annual lottery, dine and donates, and any other fundraisers at the home meets.

Chair Position fufills 100% of VIF, Other Positions receive partial VIF

Filled by: Anne Starz (Chair), Lisa Stelitano, Karin Asher, Cayce Pastoor, Cristina Roosen

Meet Director

Works with volunteer coordinator, hospitality room coordinator, and concession coordinator to plan for and manage the administrative matters at the meets.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Meghan Rusche and CharLee Brindza

Officials Representative

Serves as the main officials contact for the team within AMS, ensures that there are enough officials for all the home meets, and helps apprentice officials navigate the process of being certified.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Margaret Haas


Creates registrations (fall/winter, spring/summer) in Team Unify for swim team and swim lessons, manages USA memberships through AMS, manages wait lists for registrations, attends board meetings.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Kathy Dantey

Team Photographer

Attends all KW home meets and functions, takes pictures at events for team use, must meet all AMS photographer requirements.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Heidi Stanczak

Travel Coordinator

Makes hotel block reservations for travel meets and organizes team dinners.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Unfilled

Volunteer Coordinator(s)

Secures volunteers for the jobs required to be performed at the home meets and oversees performance of said jobs.

Fufills 100% of VIF

Filled by: Vanessa Fazio Sumrok and Karin Asher

Other Lead Volunteer roles where you can serve.

Social Media Representative

Makes posts to social media with announcements, social events, accomplishments, and other fun facts. Helps answer questions through messenger along with other super users.

Filled by: Coach Cindy Woods, Amanda Kovach, Kathy Dantey, Heidi Stanczak

Mentor - Pre-Competitive & Developmental

Experienced parents/swimmers that are new can ask mentors for help about swimming and the organization, in general.

Filled by: Jamie Henderson

Mentor - Age Group & Junior

Experienced parents/swimmers that are new can ask mentors for help about swimming and the organization, in general.

Filled by: Meghan Rusche

Mentor - Senior

Experienced parents/swimmers that are new can ask mentors for help about swimming and the organization, in general.

Filled by: Melissa Gaguzis

Mentor - Masters Flying Fish Heads

Experienced parents/swimmers that are new can ask mentors for help about swimming and the organization, in general.

Filled by: Danielle Miceli


KW Parent Volunteers