Staff Spotlight: Ignacio Berumen
Interview with Ignacio Berumen, Aquatics Manager, Alpert JCC
Born and raised in Los Angeles, Ignacio began his Aquatics career working for the City of Los Angeles Department of Recreation and Parks and the American Red Cross 22 years ago. He joined the team at the Alpert JCC in October of 2014.
Although he enjoyed his time working for the City of LA, he jumped at the opportunity to work for the AJCC, where he says the position has “met and exceeded all my expectations. When I started working at the J, I had a very limited idea about just what running an aquatics department was all about, but now I see how much goes into making a great department. Having regular meetings with the Executive Director has helped me to grow as a person and as a professional. Meeting with the different departments and understanding their needs, and working with the marketing department, has allowed me to grow the Aquatics department.”
Ignacio has experience in all areas of Aquatics, and this, accompanied by his contagious good humor and enthusiasm, makes him an effective manager: “I’ve been teaching swim lessons since 1993, and I never get tired of it. I get excited going through the process and knowing that I am making a difference in the students’ lives. Overcoming the fear of water is such a great thing, and they are so excited about. My ability to give Red Cross certifications to so many staff at the J has also been a great thing because it has allowed me to concentrate on my work knowing I can depend on the other departments to be Red Cross certified.”
For the future, Ignacio plans to continue improving the quality of lessons, and enhance the healthy lifestyle for individuals that enjoy the wonderful world of swimming. “I’ve almost quadrupled the programs, adding a lot more lessons, and not just for small children but for older youths and adults as well. We have had great success with adults who have learned to conquer their swimming fears. It’s one of the reasons I like to personally teach the older students. I used to be a Mommy and Me instructor, and that is a program I am hoping we can implement going forward. I’m looking forward to a great 2016!” So are we, Ignacio!