Park District honors record-setting swimmer
Steve Iida and Olivia Smoligia received recognition awards Feb. 28 from the Glenview Park District for accomplishments in international swimming. | Todd Shields~Sun-Times Media
Updated: April 8, 2013 6:48AM
GLENVIEW — Glenview Park District honored two of the village’s most talented in the field of international swimming competition.
Olivia Smoliga, a senior at Glenbrook High School in Glenview and a member of the Glenview Aquatic Titan Club, received the Special Commissioner’s Award from the park district.
Her GTAC coach, Steve Iida, also was recognized by the Illinois Association of Park Districts and Illinois Park and Recreation Association with a Community Service award.
They received the recognitions Feb. 28 at the park district’s regular board meeting.
Smoliga was given a plaque for her accomplishments at the Short Course World Championships on Dec. 15, 2012, in Istanbul, Turkey.
She set the American record in the 50-meter backstroke in the time of 26.57 seconds.
She also swims for the GBS Titan Girls Swim Team and holds the 100-yard backstroke and the 50 and 100 freestyle state records.
For the second year in a row she was named the Illinois Female Swimmer of the Year by the Illinois Swimming organization.
This summer, she represented GTAC at the U.S.
Olympic Trials in Omaha, Neb., where she had the third fastest time overall and finished 4th in the 100-meter backstroke.
Smoliga was then asked to join the U.S. National Team where she received 2 gold medals.
“I want to thank my parents, coaches, teammates and community for all their support,” Smoliga said.
“We commend her on all of her accomplishments as a member of GTAC and wish her continued success in her swimming career with the University of Georgia where she has accepted an athletic scholarship,” said Park District President Robert Patton.
Steve was named GTAC head coach in 2003 and has regulary produced champions, finalists and qualifiers at Age Group Regionals and State, Illinois Senior Championships, Speedo Sectionals, Junior and Senior Nationals and Olympic Trials.
Steve is a coach on the USA Junior National team.
“We could not have done without a lot of support. A person like Olivia comes around once in a lifetime,” he said.
“We could not have done this without help from the Glenview Park District.”