W&L NAMES KAMI GARDNER HEAD WOMEN'S SWIMMING COACH

LEXINGTON, Va. -- Washington and Lee Interim Athletic Director Chuck O'Connell has announced the appointment of Kami Gardner as head women's swimming coach and assistant professor of physical education. Gardner will begin her duties effective July 1.

"We are excited about the prospect of having a coach of Kami's proven ability leading our women's swimming team," stated O'Connell. "She is a dynamic addition to the department and will serve as a tremendous role model for our student-athletes."

Gardner comes to Washington and Lee following 13 seasons as the head swimming coach and aquatics director and instructor at the State University of New York at Oswego. She has guided the women's swimming team to three-straight conference titles and an undefeated record since the middle of the 2005 season. Her men's teams have finished as the SUNYAC runner-up five times and combined, the teams have totaled 188 individual SUNYAC titles, 26 SUNYAC records, 144 team records, six SUNYAC Swimmer of the Year Awards, 43 NCAA Division III Qualifiers and 49 NCAA Division III All-American Awards.

Her teams have also achieved great things in the classroom, with 14 athletes earning Academic All-America honors and several teams garnering highest GPA awards. Individually, Gardner has received the SUNYAC Men's Swimming Coach of the Year Award on three occasions and was presented the Women's Swimming Coach of the Year honor eight times, including following each of the past seven seasons.

"I am excited for the opportunity to be a part of the W&L community and working with the current student-athletes," said Gardner. " I am also eager to work with Joel (Shinofield) and the staff at W&L, who have done a fantastic job. We have the potential to become a national presence in women's swimming and I am looking forward to arriving in Lexington and getting started."

Shinofield, who serves as aquatics director and men's swimming coach, had served as the women's swimming coach on an interim basis for the 2006-07 season.

"I am looking forward to working with Kami," said Shinofield. "With the two of us on deck, I think that we have one of the best coaching staffs in Division III swimming. She is a proven winner and has done great things at Oswego. I have no doubt that she can continue to achieve great things with our athletes at W&L."

Gardner is a 1991 graduate of Kenyon College, where she graduated Cum Laude with a bachelor of arts in psychology. She helped the swimming team to four NCAA Division III Championships, was a 27-time All-American, a 17-time National Champion and an Academic All-American. Additionally, she broke five national records, competed at the Olympic trials and was named the 1991 NCAA Division III Swimmer of the Year.

A 1991 Honda Award Nominee, and member of the Kenyon College Athletic Hall of Fame, Gardner graduated from Western Illinois University in 1994 with a master's degree in sports management and also served as an assistant swimming coach.

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