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Pat Pusill receives 2017 award for Service to Aquatics

Pat Pusill has shown outstanding volunteering services to aquatics at Club, County and Regional level and to the local community of Burnham-on-Sea spanning 37 years. She is just one of Swim England's many dedicated volunteers, carrying out her duties quietly for the benefit of the swimmers and love of our sport. 

Living in Burnham-on-Sea, she was introduced to open water swimming by her father. This was a tradition she has passed on to her own children. Pat's brother Michael excelled at swimming and later swam for Kelly College. Pat's volunteering journey began in 1980, when like so many other parents, her children joined Burnham-On-Sea S.C.  Her passion for swimming was reignited. She stepped up to volunteer on poolside and completed her Level 1 and Level 2 teaching awards to develop her technical knowledge of the strokes and competitive skills required for the swimmers to enjoy the sport and compete at the highest possible level. 

When her children started competing, Pat became the Team Manager and Competition Secretary in addition to Membership Secretary and playing an active role on the Committee - duties she continued to perform many years after they left the club. Pat's enthusiasm and passion to support the swimmers and club activities encouraged many others to volunteer over the years, including 2016 Aquatics Young Volunteer runner up and 2016 Youth Sport Trust Coaching Academy candidate, Nathan Clarke whom she mentored. Transferable skills gained have been used for the benefit of the local community.

Pat continues to teach swimming as a volunteer for three primary schools and has supported Somerset / SW Sea Cadet Corps swimming activities.  Pat's outstanding service was recognised in 2010 when she was awarded Life Membership of Burnham-on-Sea S.C. and 2011 Burnham & Highbridge Civic Award for Services to Swimming. Not content with helping at club level, she began volunteering for Somerset ASA in 1983, marshalling at events (and continues to do so to date) and performing these duties for ASA South West from 1985 to 2008.

Pat Pusill and Paul Robbins

Pat is pictured receiving her regional award on 5 November 2017 for Services to Aquatics from Swim England South West President 2017/18, Paul Robbins during the Regional Winter Championships at Millfield.

Pat's friendly smile is welcomed by the swimmers, helping to settle their nerves and ensuring they compete in the correct heat. She takes great pride in this important role within the events team and has mentored many volunteers, including Somerset / SW Young Volunteer candidates over the years. Pat continues to follow the achievements of Somerset swimmers, taking pride in the pathway created to produce Olympians Stacey Tadd, James Guy and Siobhan Marie O'Connor, all of whom she remembers well.

Pat's outstanding contribution to aquatics within Somerset was rewarded with a Somerset County Badge in 2000 and Somerset ASA Wyvern Plate for Services in 2004. In 2016 Pat left Burnham-on-Sea and joined Norton Radstock S.C., a club in which she had made many friends over the years. She acts as a critical friend when asked for advice, an acknowledgement of her wealth of experience in all club matters. 

Pat joined the poolside team, teaching on a Tuesday evening for 2.5 hours, making a round trip of 54 miles. She is a well-respected, popular, supportive colleague and a great addition to the Club's volunteer workforce, increasing morale and lightening the workload.

Pat has been especially supportive to Norton Radtock's Head Coach, attending events with the team. She still enjoys the excitement of attending competitions, witnessing the swimmers put into practise the skills acquired at training and celebrating their achievements and managing disappointments.

Somerset ASA congratulates Pat on achieving so much and this deserved recognition. Please download Norton Radstock S.C.'s nomination to display on club Notice Boards and share within your networks. We would love to hear our members recall the impact Pat has had on their enjoyment of aquatics - please comment on twitter and facebook using #patvolunteers

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