Top Educator of the Year
Lifetime Achievement Award
Educator of the Decade
Hall of Fame
Dr. Jane Katz, Educator, Author, National and world-class competitive and distance swimmer, was recently selected for the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award for 2020 by the International Association of Top Professionals (IAOTP) for her influence, proficiency and dedication to her professional life.
Inclusion with the International Association of Top Professionals is an honor in itself, only a few members are selected for the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award. These special honorees are distinguished based on their longevity in their fields, their contributions they have made to society and the impact they had on their industries. Dr. Katz will be honored at IAOTP’s Annual Awards Gala being held at the Plaza Hotel in New York City at the end of this year for her selection as a Lifetime Achievement recipient.
Dr. Katz is being recognized for this honor for dedicating over 55 years of her life’s work to educating thousands of students about the benefits of water fitness. She is an inspiration to all educators and has demonstrated success not only as a Professor at John Jay College in the Department of Physical Education and Athletics where she teaches fitness and swimming to NY City’s Police and Firefighters, but in every role she has ever held. Dr. Katz’s impressive repertoire of many different roles have included educator, aquatics innovator, published author, coach, mentor and entrepreneur. Her outstanding accomplishments have included being a member of the 1964 US Synchronized Swimming Performance Team in Tokyo, where Dr. Katz helped pioneer the acceptance of Synchronized Swimming as an Olympic Event. Her achievements as a Masters competitive, distance, synchronized and fin swimmer have earned her All-American and World Masters championships. From 1974-87 she was the US Masters Synchronized Swimming National Solo Champion. In 1989 Dr. Katz won gold medals in the Second World Masters Games in Denmark in the 100, 200, 400, 800 and 1500-m freestyle.
Dr. Katz earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education at the City College of New York, a Masters’ in Education Administration from New York University and both a Master’s degree in Therapeutic Recreation for Aging and her Doctor of Education Degree in Gerontology from Columbia University.
Aside from her successful career as a Professor and Swimmer, Dr. Katz is a sought-after speaker and published author. After being injured in a car accident when she was rammed by a drunk driver, Her company, Global Aquatics () was inspired and has since published over 14 books on swimming, fitness and exercising in the water. Some include: Swimming for Total Fitness and Your Water Workout, and produced several DVDs on swimming, water aerobics and synchronized swimming. Dr. Katz also sits on the advisory board of Aquatics International magazine, is a member of USA Swimming’s Education Committee and has been a consultant to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports since 1981. In 2015 Dr. Katz launched WETs 4 VETS, a service for rehabilitating the mind, body and spirit of military veterans re-entering civilian life using holistic Water Exercise Techniques. In 2007, Dr. Katz helped create the KARE (Kids Aquatic Re-Entry) Program, in cooperation with the Department of Juvenile Justice to help troubled youth learn life’s lessons poolside. She also created a Co-Ed program for minority men and women seniors called the NORC (Naturally Occurring Retirement Community) Program.
Throughout her illustrious career Dr. Katz has received numerous awards, accolades and has been recognized worldwide for her outstanding leadership and commitment to the profession. This year she will appear in TIP (Top Industry Professionals) Magazine and she was also selected as Top Educator of the Year by the International Association of Top Professionals (IAOTP). For 2021 she is being considered for the Empowered Woman of the Year Award. In 2014, she was the recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Presidents’ Council on Fitness, Sports, and Nutrition. In 2012 she received the Distinguished Educator Award from City College of New York and was inducted into the John Jay College of Criminal Justice Athletics Hall of Fame. In 2011 she received the US Masters Swimming Fitness Award and the USMS June Krauser Communications Award, at the United States Aquatics Sports Convention and was inducted into the National Jewish Sports Hall of Fame. In 2009 Dr. Katz competed for the 13th time at the Maccabi Games in Israel and won 4 Gold Medals at the World Senior Games at Stanford University. In 2008 Dr. Katz won 7 gold medals at the Pan American Masters Maccabi Swim Championships in Argentina, and won the US Masters Swimming Short Course 200-yard Backstroke Championship in Austin Texas. In 2005 and 2004 Dr. Katz earned US Masters Swimming All American Status and was selected by Aquatics International Magazine as one of the 25 most powerful people in the world of Aquatics. Also, for 2004 Dr. Katz was named for the second time, Women’s Swimming coach of the Year by the City University of New York. She is noted as becoming the first woman to be admitted to the City College of New York Sports Hall of Fame and in 2000 at the XXVII Olympiad in Sydney, Australia, Dr. Katz was awarded the Federation Internationale de Natation Amateur Certificate of Merit to honor her lifetime of dedication and contribution to the development of the sport of swimming from 1957-2000.
Looking back, Dr. Katz attributes her success to her perseverance, mentors she has had along the way, especially her father who was a track and swim coach, and staying passionate in all her endeavors. When not working, she enjoys travelling, reading, and swimming. For the future, she hopes to continue to make a difference in her students as well as people’s lives any way she can.