Swimming Australia is proud to announce the new Athlete Leadership Group set to guide the Australian Dolphins through to the Paris Olympic Games.
Madison Wilson OAM, Zac Stubblety-Cook OAM, Tamsin Cook, Jenna Strauch and Open Water swimmer Bailey Armstrong will lead their teammates across the shortened Olympic campaign cycle to Paris.
The accomplished quintet emerged as the new Leadership Group following a nomination and voting process from their fellow Dolphins athletes.
Swimming Australia High Performance Director, Tamara Sheppard, congratulated the group and welcomed their appointment.
“It is always a privilege to be appointed a Leader of your peers and this group of Athlete Leaders recognise and are excited by both the opportunities and challenges presented by this role,” Sheppard said.
“Our Tokyo Leaders have left a tremendous legacy and we thank them for their contribution and their ongoing support of our new Paris Leadership Group.”
Dolphins Leaders are tasked with contributing to a team dynamic, environment and experience that reflects the team values of Courage, Unity and Excellence.
Australian Dolphins Head Coach, Rohan Taylor, believes all five athletes not only embody those core values, but live them in the daily training environment.
“Making each other better is at the core of everything we do as a team and our new Leaders will ensure that ethos remains central to the Dolphins through the unique qualities they each bring to the role,” Taylor said.
“Our previous Leaders worked closely with the entire athlete cohort in the evolvement of our culture in recent years and I know this new group will relish the responsibility of continuing that legacy to create a sustainable environment for all who have the privilege of representing the Dolphins.”
A four time medal winner across two separate Olympics, Wilson said she was honoured to help lead the way as the team prepares to deliver something special in the coming years.
“I’ve been a part of this Dolphins environment for some time now and I’m really passionate about the wonderful team we have created in recent years and incredibly proud of the values and culture this group represents.”
The responsibility and respect for the role was also not lost on Tokyo Gold medallist Stubblety-Cook.
“It’s an honour and privilege to be voted in as an Athlete Leader for the Paris cycle. The Leaders of the past have truly created a legacy that I hope we will only further grow and foster, continuing to take a person first approach and living by the philosophy of ‘we make each other better’.”
Preparing for her third Olympic campaign, Cook agrees the new Leadership Group will continue the rich legacy of their predecessors.
“I’m incredibly honoured to be representing my peers as an Athlete Leader for the Paris 2024 Olympic cycle. The Leadership Group has always strived to create an environment where every Dolphin feels supported, valued, and prepared to perform at their absolute best and I am excited to continue this legacy with the next generation.”
Strauch made her Olympic debut in Tokyo and said it was a privilege to be appointed to the position and work alongside such great athletes.
“The Dolphins swim team is full of exceptional men and women who all bring unique and admirable traits to the team both in and out the pool. As a member of the Leadership team, I hope to foster the culture that has been developed before us and continue to enrich the careers and lives of the Dolphin athletes.”
In a reflection of the growing stature of the discipline at an Olympic level, Armstrong said it was humbling to become the first open water athlete to join the Leadership Group.
“I am very honoured to be representing Australia’s athletes and the sport of marathon swimming as we continue to improve on our successes of Tokyo. It’s great to see the Dolphins pool and open water teams working together and becoming a combined force as we strive towards the common goal of success in Paris 2024.”
Swimming Australia would also like to acknowledge and thank Bronte Campbell OAM, Cate Campbell OAM, Alex Graham, Jess Hansen and Mitch Larkin for their service and contribution as the Leadership Group for the Tokyo campaign.
The Dolphins attention now rests firmly on a busy competitive schedule in the coming months, starting at the Australian Swimming Championships in May, followed by the FINA World Championships and Birmingham Commonwealth Games in June and July respectively.