The YMCA of Greater Seattle CEO Leads By Example and Learns to Swim

Seattle, WA, June 11, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — As King County approaches summer, the YMCA of Greater Seattle wants to ensure water safety remains a priority. Anytime we enjoy the water to cool off, the risk of drowning dramatically increases, whether at in-home pools, ponds, lakes, rivers, streams, or oceans. To lead by example, YMCA CEO Loria Yeadon recently learned to swim at age 55, proving there is never a wrong time to prioritize water safety. 

Growing up in a small town where pools weren’t available to minorities left Loria and her siblings at a disadvantage.  Today, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, African-American children ages 10 to 14 drown in swimming pools at rates 7.6 times higher than Caucasian children, and for African-American children ages 5 to 9 the rate is 2.6 times higher than Caucasian children. Determined to ensure her past doesn’t dictate her future, Loria Yeadon set off to learn how to swim when she became CEO of the YMCA of Greater Seattle in 2019.


Before her first swim lesson, Loria notes she was filled with “inherent trepidation and fear”, wondering what awaited her in the pool. Relief overcame her as she realized her instructor was not only experienced, but patient, leading her step by step and easing her into lessons until she felt “one with the water.” Learning how to swim filled Loria with joy and passion for a new sport, but also raised the issue of how to bring more equity to swimming and, at the same time, save lives. 

Stepping into her role as CEO of the YMCA meant making swimming accessible to everyone. Although the YMCA has a variety of activities for families, it remains a swim-and-gym place. Noted as “America’s Swim Instructor”, the Y annually teaches thousands of children life-saving water safety and swimming skills. By making swimming accessible, Loria hopes to embrace learning how to swim and getting rid of fears, for herself and everyone. 

As part of National Water Safety Month, the Y encourages parents to actively promote water safety and register their youth for Y swim lessons.

To learn more about the YMCA of Greater Seattle’s swim programs, visit  

About the YMCA of Greater Seattle 
The YMCA of Greater Seattle is the Northwest’s leading nonprofit organization, strengthening communities through youth development, healthy living, and social responsibility. Founded in 1876, the Y reaches more than 206,632 people of all backgrounds, abilities, and financial circumstances annually through 14 branches, three overnight camp properties, and more than 200 program sites throughout King, south Snohomish, and Lewis counties. The Y nurtures more than 97,000 kids and teens to develop their gifts and give back to our community while engaging thousands of volunteers who contribute hundreds of thousands of hours of service each year. Visit  

Disclaimer: The above press release comes to you under an arrangement with GlobeNewswire. Business Upturn takes no editorial responsibility for the same.