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Swim News Magazine

The University of Toronto Archives announced that the Nick Thierry personal papers, which includes 320 issues of the magazine Swim News, is available to researchers. The processing and arrangement of Nick Thierry’s papers was made possible through a donation made by Mr. George F. Thierry, Nick Thierry’s brother.

While Thierry passed away on October 2, 2012 at the age of 73, the documentary history of his impact on the swimming world will be preserved and made available at the University of Toronto Archives. Faculty, students, staff and researchers are encouraged to visit the Archives and explore this extraordinary new resource.

You can access all editions of the magazine online here -

More information on Nicholas Thierry and Swim News Magazine: 

Nicholas Joseph Thierry was born in Budapest, Hungary and at the age of 8, moved with his family to Havana, Cuba, where he began to swim competitively. After high school, Nick moved to Canada, where he attended the University of Toronto earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture in 1964, while swimming competitively for the University. In 1961, in addition to his own competitive swimming, Thierry began coaching student athletes from the University of Toronto as well as athletes from local swim clubs. Thierry served as an assistant coach at the University of Toronto for 21 years, while also playing a large role in the selection of swimmers for Canadian Olympic teams in 1964, 1968 and 1972, and serving as the head coach of the Canadian swim team for the 1970 Commonwealth Games.

During his coaching career, Thierry oversaw a number of high-profile and successful swimmers including Angela Coughlan, Jim Shaw, Karen Le Gresley, Gaye Stratten, and Judy Garay. Thierry’s coaching style was heavily influenced by International Swimming Hall of Fame coaches Stefan Hunyadfi, Peter Daland and Howard Firby, the later with which Thierry became close friends, corresponding regularly and travelling to numerous international competitions together. Thierry also held several administrative positions for various Canadian swimming associations. He was the chairman and secretary for the Canadian Swimming Coaches Association (CSCA), and served on the Board of Directors for Swim Ontario and Swim Canada.

While Thierry was coaching he discovered the need to start tracking and compiling swimming statistics. To help facilitate the spread of swimmer’s statistical information, Thierry organized Swim Canada, a monthly publication that was later renamed Swim News. Officially started in 1974, Swim News carries both Canadian and international news, statistics, athlete and coach profiles, meet results, and articles on all aspects of competitive swimming. Thierry served as publisher, editor and writer for Swim News from 1974 to 2012. To make the publication as complete and thorough as possible, Thierry attempted to locate and record every available major swim meet worldwide, leading to the formation of the International Swimming Statisticians Association (ISSA) in 1986. Thierry’s travels saw him attend almost every type of swimming event in the world, from Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) meets, to the World Cup of Swimming and the Summer Olympic Games. While Thierry did much of the work himself for Swim News, he eventually realized the magazine needed a larger presence in the swimming community, employing photographer and friend Marco Chiesa to aid in Swim News’ online existence.

The statistics compiled and published in Swim News were supplemented by FINA (Fédération Internationale de Natation) world rankings to give coaches, athletes, journalists and fans the ability to track all aspects of a swimmer’s career, making Swim News an invaluable resource for the swimming community. Early on, Thierry would often compile swim records and statistics manually, striving to ensure the quality and accuracy of the information published in Swim News. When computer software programs and electronic data transmission became available, Thierry began developing a database containing 40 years of swim rankings and statistics to ensure the spread of information across the sport. Nick Thierry passed away on October 2, 2012 in Toronto, Ontario at the age of 73 and was posthumously inducted in to the CSCA Hall of Fame in September 2014.  

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