SmartBrownVoices is honored to have Cullen Jones on this weeks podcast to talk about the importance of learning how to swim. Please visit USA Swimming Foundation’s Make A Splash, and sign up for affordable swimming classes in your area.
About Cullen Jones:
Cullen Andrew Jones is an Olympic gold medalist who specializes in freestyle sprint events. As part of the American team, he holds the world record in the 4×100-meter freestyle relay (long course). At the 2012 Summer Olympics, he won silver medals in the 4 x 100 meter freestyle relay and the 50-meter freestyle, as well as the gold in the 4 x 100 metre medley.
Jones was born on February 29, 1984 in the Bronx borough of New York City. Jones grew up in Irvington, New Jersey. At age five, he nearly drowned while splashing around at a Pennsylvania water park. Immediately after that incident, his mother Debra enrolled him in swimming lessons and it soon became clear that Jones had natural talent as a swimmer.
He started his age group swimming career with the Metro Express Marlins Swim Team in West Orange, New Jersey before switching to the Jersey Gators Swim Team in Cranford, New Jersey. In those years, Jones was one of a small number of African-American competitors in the sport, but now he uses his notoriety and influence to inspire more children from minority communities to become swimmers.