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About the Founder
Beth Botsford started her swimming journey at the age of 9 for the prestigious North Baltimore Aquatic Club (NBAC) in Baltimore, Maryland. It was there where she was first introduced to the atmosphere that would be responsible for laying the groundwork for her success over the next 20 years. Exposed daily to elite training methods, techniques and philosophies, Beth went on to break every National Age Group Record held in the backstroke events for the ages 9-10 year olds, 11-12 year olds and 13-14 year olds. Beth qualified for her first Nationals at the age of 12 where she finished 5th in the 100 backstroke and was named “Rookie of the Meet” by USA Swimming. Her 11-12 100m backstroke National Age Group record (1:03.08) that she set as a 12 year old in 1994 not only still stands, but is currently listed as #7 in the “Top 10 National Age Group Records of All Time”.
In 1996 at the age of 14, and already with 2 National Championships under her belt, Beth placed first in the 200m backstroke at the US Olympic Trials and second in the 100m backstroke, earning her a spot as one of the youngest members on the United States Olympic Team. That summer in Atlanta, Georgia, Beth swam to a gold medal finish in the 100m Backstroke at the XXVI Olympic Games and swam the backstroke leg of the gold medal winning 4x100m Medley Relay.
Throughout the next ten years, Beth won a total of 6 National Championships, broke the American and US Open records in the 200m Backstroke, was an NCAA Champion and 16 time All-American for the University of Arizona and was voted the PAC-10 Newcomer of the Year and received the Ruby Award for “Outstanding Female Student Athlete”. Her competition bio includes the Pan Pacific Games Team, Pan American Games Team, World Championship Team and World University Games Team to which she was elected Team Captain. She has appeared on The Today Show and ESPN Outside the Lines, she has been published in Swimming World Magazine for an article she wrote on body image in young female athletes and was a feature commentator for the World Championship Sports Network’s exclusive coverage of the World Cup circuit for Bela Horizonte, Brazil; Stockholm, Sweden; Berlin, Germany; and Moscow, Russia.
Beth settled in Verona in 2010 and founded Golden Guppies Swim School. Her areas of work have since expanded to include group clinics, semi-private and private work for swimmers including competitive age group swimmers, collegiate swimmers and triathletes. She currently operates out of Gold’s Gym in Fitchburg, Supreme Health and Fitness in Madison and Middleton High School in Middleton. Her classes accompanying Golden Guppies now include “Golden Technique Stroke Clinics”, “Technique Camp” and “Master’s Technique”. Beth credits her accomplishments and her teaching philosophies entirely to what she was exposed to as an athlete by whom she considers to be some of the best coaches in the history of the sport. Between her coaches at NBAC and her coaches at the University of Arizona, Beth was fortunate to train her entire career amongst an elite group of athletes and coaches who have combined to produce more than 32 Olympic Athletes, over 40 Olympic Medals (19 of them gold) and over 20 world records. Beth considers herself extremely lucky to have been able to train under the guidance of Murry Stephens at NBAC and Frank Busch at the University of Arizona, both of whom have been elected as coaches to the USA Olympic Team throughout their careers.
Beth has spoken at a number of schools and symposiums about the importance of goal setting, determination, work ethic and education. She has been requested and traveled everywhere from Alaska for her stroke clinics to Japan for her stroke demonstration, but truly could not imagine settling in a better place than Wisconsin. She will be getting married in August 2012 to Mark Kramer, and is excited to start her new life with Mark and her beautiful new family, Ethan (17), Maya (13) and Chloe (9).