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It wasn’t that long ago that Adam Katchmarchi was just a water baby who spent his summers dreaming about the day he would be old enough to be a lifeguard.
Today, that dream has become a reality, and then some. At 21,
Katchmarchi is perhaps the youngest-ever Aquatics
International Power 25 honoree, and if his credentials thus
far are any indication, it’s a sure bet the Slippery
Rock University senior will have many more industry accolades
coming to him in the future.
Katchmarchi, a Pennsylvania native, is majoring in physical
education and says he chose to attend Slippery Rock because of what
it offers in aquatics. But even before he set foot on campus,
Katchmarchi was already pretty well-educated.
He began lifeguarding at Reynoldsville (Pa.) Community Swimming Pool and was
named head guard within three years. At 16 he became a certified
Red Cross CPR and first aid instructor, and at 17 he became
certified and began teaching as a water safety instructor.
Currently, Katchmarchi is a certified Red Cross lifeguard
instructor trainer, and founding president of the Slippery Rock
University Aquatics and Scuba Club, which also is the first such
chapter of the National Drowning Prevention Alliance He first became
involved with NDPA when Slippery Rock University helped host
NDPA’s annual symposium in 2010. He was a scholarship
recipient to attend the 2011 symposium.
Bob Ogoreuc, assistant professor in the SRU Physical Education
Department, was co-chair of the 2010 NDPA symposium and helped
bring the conference to Slippery Rock. Katchmarchi counts him as a
key mentor and says it’s been the support of Ogoreuc and
others that has helped “slingshot” him into the
“No matter which way I go after graduation, I want to be
involved in drowning prevention,” Katchmarchi says. He
hasn’t made any firm decisions yet, but ultimately hopes to
make his mark in aquatics by furthering the level of
professionalism and integrity among lifeguards and swim