May 23, 2016 - Olympic Cascade Aquatics (OCA) and the City of Mercer Island, partners with the Mercer Island School District in operating the Mary Wayte Pool, were honored for community service on May 20.
Nominated by Superintendent Dr. Gary Plano, OCA and the City received the Community Recognition Award from the Washington Association of School Administrators (WASA) at a luncheon in Renton. Accepting the award on behalf of OCA were Alice Godfred and John Walker, and Kirsten Taylor, assistant city manager, on behalf of the City of Mercer Island.
Named in honor of Mercer Island High School alumna and 1984 Olympic gold medalist, the Mary Wayte Pool, owned and operated by the Mercer Island School District, has been a public recreation facility for more than 40 years. It remains one of the most heavily used aquatics facilities in the Northwest.
Several years ago, when King County got out of the pool management business and the future of this beloved facility was threatened, Olympic Cascade Aquatics, a Mercer Island-based competitive swimming organization with a long history of excellence, responded to a Request for Proposal (RFP) to be considered as a contractor to manage the pool. The District entered into its first contract with OCA in December of 2010, and the relationship with OCA and the City of Mercer Island began.
Olympic Cascade Aquatics has professionally managed the pool beginning in January 2011, promoting swimming as a lifetime sport to families and the community. A full range of services is available for infants to seniors, recreation to competition, as well as special programs for the adaptive population. Meanwhile, the pool continues to provide a quality facility for the high school boys and girls swimming and water polo teams.
At the same time the District contracted with OCA, the City of Mercer Island has steadfastly supported the pool with an annual appropriation or operating subsidy, presently over $125,000 per year, to ensure its financial stability.
“This partnership with Olympic Cascade Aquatics and the City has truly been a win-win for the district and community and deserving of this recognition.” Dr. Plano said.
Left to right, School Board President Ralph Jorgenson, Assistant City Manager Kirsten Taylor,
Alice Godfred and John Walker of Olympic Cascade Aquatics and Superintendent Dr. Gary Plano.
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