Goal to Raise $1M Toward Renovations, Maintenance and Swim Programs; Founded By AV Executive Sam Taylor; Website Live for Donations
Lexington, KY — With the goal of raising $1M to rejuvenate a community by bringing back a swimming facility to Kentucky State University (KSU) students and YMCA members in the local area, a new non-profit organization called Swim With Purpose has officially been launched.
Founded by AV industry executive and avid swimmer/swim coach, Sam Taylor, Swim With Purpose was created to support the re-establishment of the indoor pool facility at the William Exum Center for the students, faculty and community to utilize for healthy lifestyle and therapy. Programs will be created by the University and the Frankfort YMCA to break generational stigmas and create a safe and teachable atmosphere for children, college students and adults. The fund will also be used for ongoing maintenance and programs that serve the community.
On April 19, Swim with Purpose is hosting a kick-off event at 9:00 a.m. at the KSU Cooperative Extension building on campus. This gathering provides the opportunity for attendees to meet the board of directors, listen to a short presentation about Swim With Purpose, then walk over to the William Exum Center to have some photos taken in the (empty) pool to celebrate the official launch of Swim with Purpose.
According to Swim with Purpose Founder Sam Taylor, “Because I am retiring in June, I will be able to spend more time engaging in my lifelong passion for swimming. While swimming at KSU as a member of the YMCA, I was aware that the pool at Kentucky State University had been out of operation for nearly two years. These fundraising efforts will allow us to make the necessary repairs to get the pool back in working condition.”
Taylor reflected, “KSU is a public, historically black land-grant university. Unfortunately, statistics show that minorities are 50 percent more likely to drown because of their limited access to pools and swim lessons. Once the pool is ready, the next goal is to start a swim program for college students.
Additionally, we are working with the local YMCA on providing swim lessons for those children who wouldn’t otherwise have access to this life-saving skill.”
Taylor added that in addition to monetary donations, Swim with Purpose is also in need of AV equipment that can be used in and around the swim area in the William Exum Center, as well as auctioned as part of additional fundraising efforts. To donate equipment, please email email@example.com.
Swim with Purpose Board of Directors
The carefully-selected Swim For Purpose board of directors is comprised of dedicated individuals who share a passion for promoting healthy living and creating opportunities for community members of all ages. With a diverse range of backgrounds and expertise, the board works collaboratively to oversee the organization’s fundraising efforts, develop programs, and establish partnerships to achieve the fund’s goals of reestablishing the indoor pool facility at the Exum Center.
Sam Taylor, Chairman
Sam Taylor has been an avid swimmer for his entire life. He was seven-time Division III All-American during his college swimming career at Johns Hopkins University. He came back to his alma mater from 2010 to 2016 as a volunteer assistant coach. He has also competed in Masters swimming for more than twenty years, being ranked nationally in numerous events. In his business life, Sam is the Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Exertis Almo, the nation’s largest Professional Audio Video distributor.
Katrisha Waldridge, Co-Chairman
Frankfort City Commissioner Katrisha Waldridge is a mother of two teen boys, graduate of Kentucky State University with a BA and MPA, and the immediate past Mayor ProTem for the city of Frankfort for the last four years. She is the first African- American Woman to be elected as City Commissioner and Mayor ProTem for the city of Frankfort. In her years of service, she has become a role model for women and advocates for nonprofits.
Jamaal Jackson is the Deputy Athletic Director for External Operations and the Head Men’s Basketball Coach at Kentucky State University. He is very active in the central Kentucky region, serving as a member of the Martin Luther King, Jr. State Commission, the Blue Grass Community Scholarship Committee, and the Frankfort Parks, Recreation & Historic Sites Board.
Berry L. Popp
Berry Popp is Vice President and Commercial Lender of Whitaker Bank. As a commercial lender, Berry enjoys assisting new and existing businesses with their banking needs. He also serves as the Ambassador Co-Chair, Education Committee member and the Finance Committee Member of the Frankfort Area Chamber of Commerce. He is on the board of the recently formed Development Interest Group of Frankfort (DIG Frankfort) and is the Co-Treasurer of the Frankfort Kiwanis Club.
Nick Belcore is the Executive Vice President of Peerless-AV a technology hardware company. He comes from a family of swimmers, including his daughter whose dedication to swim is year-round through both varsity and club participation. Nick is a firm believer that a strong body and strong mind go hand-in-hand and places tremendous importance on the values that are taught through competitive sport.
About Swim With Purpose
Founded by AV industry executive and avid swimmer/swim coach, Sam Taylor, Swim With Purpose was created to support the re-establishment of the indoor pool facility at the Exum Center for the students, faculty and community to utilize for healthy lifestyle and therapy. Programs will be created by the University and the Frankfort YMCA to break generational stigmas and create a safe and teachable atmosphere for children, college students and adults. The fund will also be used for ongoing maintenance and programs that serve the community. For more information or to make a donation, go to www.swimwithpurpose.org.