World Champion Swimmer Nathan Adrian Makes The Salvation Army His “Charity of Choice” this Christmas


Nathan Adrian is one of the world’s top freestyle swimmers. He is a four-time Olympic medalist, including three gold medals, and two-time World Champion.

Born and raised in Bremerton, Washington, Adrian captured 11 National titles while helping guide the University of California – Berkeley to their first NCAA National Championship in 31 years. A two-time PAC-10 Swimmer of the Year, he was named the PAC-10 Scholar Athlete of the Year and Neufeld Scholar Athlete as a senior at Cal.

As his “Charity of Choice” this Christmas, Adrian is supporting The Salvation Army through a variety of promotions surrounding our 122nd annual Red Kettle Campaign, including serving as the honorary chairman of The Salvation Army’s second annual World Record Bell-Ringing Contest on December 11, and guest hosting our third annual Rock the Red Kettle Concert in Los Angeles on December 15.

SA: The Salvation Army is your charity of choice this Christmas. How did you make this decision?

Nathan Adrian: I’ve been involved with The Salvation Army in various ways throughout my entire life and mostly through my parents who have supported the organization for years. My dad especially has been really active at the local branch in Bremerton, WA. I’ve always liked the way The Salvation Army runs itself, and believe it is a great means for giving back to those in need.

So your parents were pretty influential with their example of giving back?

Nathan Adrian: Yeah, absolutely. Even when I was a young kid I remember ringing bells, helping my dad pick up kettles at the end of the day and bringing them back to The Salvation Army. I was as young as five when I began ringing the bells at the kettle, but I had a pretty short attention span so I don’t think I lasted longer than an hour! I believe it’s important to help others because it’s not necessarily whether or not the person deserves it, or if the circumstances are their fault. Sometimes life happens and you need help. I believe if people are in a spot to help, they should.

You’re quite an accomplished athlete! How did you get into swimming?

Nathan Adrian: I started when I was two years old with lessons and began swimming competitively at the age of five. My brother and sister had also done it. Swimming was a great extracurricular, especially since I had a lot of energy as a kid. I think it made me a little easier to deal with!

Did you ever think this extracurricular would be a career or would land you three gold medals?

Nathan Adrian: Those kind of feelings evolved with great coaching, leaders, and role models that I had to look up to. Everyone around me was so supportive and loving. They encouraged me to dream big so that’s what I did.

What does giving back mean to you?

Nathan Adrian: An awareness of those that are in need. There are people who are struggling to put food on the table, who are living out of their cars and it’s often simply not their fault.

How can your fans and followers support your partnership with The Salvation Army?

Nathan Adrian: I’ll be guest hosting The Salvation Army’s Rock the Red Kettle Concert in Los Angeles on December 15, so I encourage fans to watch the show live on the organization’s Facebook page:’m also kicking off the World Record bell ringing competition on December 11. And to those who are still in school and have some time off during the holidays, it’s a great time to volunteer and give back!

Any last words for readers?

Nathan Adrian: A lot of people will be going out and shopping at their local malls during the holidays. I encourage them to reach into their pockets and donate to the Red Kettles!


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