Kami Gardner is in her first season as the director of aquatics and head men's and women's swimming coach at W&L. She had previously served as the head women's swimming coach for the last five seasons and was the interim men's coach for much of the 2012 season.
Gardner's five seasons coaching the women has resulted in a 43-22 overall record and five Old Dominion Athletic Conference Championships. Additionally, her athletes have gone on to set 18 new school records over the past five years, including setting new bests in all five relay events. For her efforts she has been recognized as the ODAC Coach of the Year three times in the past four seasons.
Gardner's swimmers have received 70 All-ODAC citations during her tenure and the Generals have claimed the ODAC Swimmer, Scholar-Athlete and Rookie of the Year Awards across the last five seasons. Gardner helped mentor Lindsey Strachan '09 to Honorable Mention All-America honors in the 200 back in 2009, W&L's first women's swimming All-American in 10 years. For her efforts, she was recognized as the 2009 ODAC Women's Swimming Coach of the Year.
While coaching the men in 2011-12, Gardner helped lead the Generals to a 3-3 overall record, a fourth-place finish at the Bluegrass Mountain Conference Championship and a 16th-place finish at the NCAA Championships. She helped mentor four swimmers to all-conference laurels, while three individual athletes and three relay teams attained All-America honors at the NCAA Championships.
Gardner came to W&L following 13 seasons as the head men's and women's swimming coach, aquatics director and instructor at the State University of New York at Oswego. She guided the women's swimming team to three-straight conference titles and an undefeated record from 2005-07.
Her men's teams finished as the SUNYAC runner-up five times and combined, the teams totaled 188 individual SUNYAC titles, 26 SUNYAC records, 144 team records, six SUNYAC Swimmer of the Year Awards, 43 NCAA Division III Qualifiers and 49 NCAA Division III All-American Awards.
Gardner's Oswego teams also achieved great things in the classroom, with 14 athletes earning Academic All-America honors and several teams garnering highest GPA awards. Individually, Gardner received the SUNYAC Men's Swimming Coach of the Year Award on three occasions and was presented the Women's Swimming Coach of the Year honor eight times, including following each of her final seven seasons.
Prior to taking the helm at SUNY Oswego, Gardner was an assistant swim coach at Western Illinois University from 1993-94. While at WIU, she helped to lead the Leathernecks' men's team to back-to-back Mid-Continent Conference championships. In 1994 she assisted in coaching both the conference's Swimmer of the Year and Newcomer of the Year, in addition being a part of the Western Illinois staff that was honored as the conference's Coaching Staff of the Year.
Gardner is a 1991 graduate of Kenyon College, where she graduated Cum Laude with a bachelor of arts in psychology. She helped the swimming team to four NCAA Division III Championships and was a 27-time All-American. A total of 17-times she was a National Champion and was named an Academic All-American on two occasions. Additionally, she broke five national records and was named the 1991 NCAA Division III Swimmer of the Year. Gardner participated at the 1984 Olympic trials in the 100 and 200 backstroke.
A 1991 Honda Award Nominee and 2002 inductee into the Kenyon College Athletic Hall of Fame, Gardner graduated from Western Illinois University in 1994 with a master's degree in sports management and also served as an assistant swimming coach.
Gardner has been a member of the College Swimming Coaches Association of America since 1994 and, in 2003, she was awarded the American Swim Coaches Association Certificate of Excellence. In 2001, Gardner was the Assistant Meet Director for the Men's and Women's Division III Championships. Active in the sport, Gardner has been involved in numerous camps, both as a counselor and as a lecturer.
GARDNER YEAR-BY-YEAR AT W&L
||ODAC Champions, ODAC Coach of the Year
||ODAC Champions, ODAC Coach of the Year
|2011-12||7-2||ODAC Champions, ODAC Coach of the Year|
||43-22 (.662)||5 ODAC Titles, 3 ODAC Coach of the Year Awards
|2011-12||3-3||4th at BMC Championships, 16th at NCAA Championships|
|1 YEAR||3-3 (.500)|