City of La Mirada, CA
2015 Paragon Award / Recreational Swimming
Lori Thompson specializes in aquatic financial operations and business strategies, creating financially efficient operations that maximize the competitive and recreational aspects of the facility. Nowhere is that more apparent than at “Splash!” the La Mirada Regional Aquatics Center that Lori currently oversees. Splash! is a facility that is home to several team programs, including age group, high school, Masters Swimming, synchronized swimming and water polo. It hosts a large number of aquatic events each year but is also open to free recreational swim, free swim team, water polo, synchro and learn to swim. These programs, along with the facility is partially subsidized by annual passes to its waterpark, Buccaneer Bay, which includes a lazy river, three forty-foot tall water slides, a children’s play structure and spray pads. The facility also boasts a 50 meter competitive pool with removable bulkhead and a 25 yard instructional pool and spa. Phase two, for which the infrastructure and locker rooms are correctly in place include a second 50-meter pool, therapy pool and additional water slide. The recreational programs at Splash! help support the competitive programs as a benefit to the entire community!
Lori has been involved in many different aspects of the aquatics field, with over 30 years of experience: lifeguard, swim instructor, coach and pool manager. After receiving her degree from Biola University, she became involved in a number of drowning prevention organizations aimed at helping educate the community on the importance of drowning prevention and water safety. The City of La Mirada offers free water safety classroom presentations and most importantly is a key location and partner for the World’s Largest Swim Lesson, which is supported by a coalition of the nation’s leading water safety organizations, including the American Red Cross. Since the World’s Largest Swim Lesson began, Lori and her team have worked with program officials to help bring water safety
awareness to the local, state and national level.
Lori has been awarded for her work in the field of aquatics as well as served in many capacities; she received the Citation Award from the Southern California Public Pool Operators Association, and has received several awards from the Southern California Municipal Athletic Federation. She has served as the President of the California Parks and Recreation Aquatics Section and the Sothern California Public Pool Operators Section. She has worked as a trainer with the American Red Cross, Ellis and Associates, Australian Swim School and most recently has become a site administrator for the Starfish Swim Program developing the largest Starfish Swim Program in California.
Recipients of the