James Stockslager, inducted 2018
|Youth sports wouldn’t exist without volunteers, and Dr. Lee Stockslager is a prime example. He has two passions in life -- his practice of dentistry and coaching youth swimmers in Macon. The native Atlantan was a swimmer in high school at Marist and also during his undergraduate days at the University of the South, Suwanee. While studying dentistry at Emory, he began his coaching career working with Swim Atlanta. After a brief stay practicing dentistry in Plains, he settled in Macon in 1981 and has been involved in youth swimming in the city since. When he arrived, Macon had no USA level swim teams, but under his guidance, that changed quickly. He and a group of investors partnered with the developers of a new subdivision on Northside Drive and built a 25-yard pool on site, and in 1981, Middle Georgia Aquatics was born. Middle Georgia Aquatics eventually became Swim Macon, and a 50-meter pool was found at the Highlands Aquatic Center and was used by Swim Macon to host meets and train. Swim Macon, under Stockslager’s direction, has produced countless championships swimmers, at all ages and levels, recreational league, USA club, GHSA, GISA, as well as the collegiate level. More than 35 young people have been able to swim at the collegiate level, many on scholarships, because of his tutelage. One of his pupils, Laura Conway, who was inducted into the Macon Sports Hall of Fame in 2017, went on to become an eight-time All-American at the University of Georgia. She helped lead the Georgia swimming team to the 2005 NCAA and SEC championships. In 2006, she finished first in both the NCAA and SEC 500-yard freestyle competition. Conway is the only Macon swimmer to ever be named to a U.S. national team. Stockslager coached both the girls and boys JV/varsity swim teams at Mount de Sales Academy, producing 14 GISA State Championship titles while winning six coach of the year awards in the sport. Stockslager is a true volunteer and has never been compensated for his work as a swimming coach for the youth of Macon.|
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