Courtney Kalisz – Honor Athlete

When Courtney was 10 weeks old, her mother Cathy read Watersafe Your Baby in One Week, and she and husband Mike tried it. It worked. At 5 she started swim lessons where she quickly progressed through the levels right onto a summer swim team under Coach Richard Shinnick. After the first meet, where she was DQ’ed, she went on to break Harford County Swim League records in backstroke and ended the season with championship victories in fly and back and runner up in free. Rich was starting a year round team and Courtney joined. At age 7 , she set her first of many Maryland Swimming Records. In 1999, Coach Paul Yetter joined Bel Air and became Courtney’s coach. When Coach Yetter moved to NBAC in 2000, Courtney followed. Courtney set her first NAG swimming for Coach Tom Himes at age 10. She was MD Swimming Age Group Swimmer of the year from 2000-2005, NAG records in 200 Butterfly, 200 Backstroke and 400 IM in 11-12 and 13-14 age groups, three Olympic Trial cuts at age 13. World Rankings in 200 Back, 200 Fly, 200 IM, 400 IM and 100 Backstroke between 2005-2007. Courtney was the youngest competitor to reach semi finals at 2004 Olympic Trials, placing 11th in 200 Butterfly. In 2005 Courtney was named to the National Junior Team and travelled to Hawaii for Junior Pan Pacs where she won a silver (200 Fly) and a Bronze (400 IM). In 2006 , Courtney qualified for  FINA World Youth  Championship team in Rio de Janiero, Brazil where she won Gold in 200 Fly . 2007 saw Courtney back in Rio at the Pan American Games where she won silver in 200 Fly. Courtney attended USC on scholarship and retired from swimming following an ankle injury. She currently lives in LA working as a freelance writer. For her representation of Team USA in numerous international competitions, and a record breaking career from summer league to National Age Group Records, as well as blazing a trail three siblings followed, Courtney is inducted into the Maryland Swimming Hall of Fame.