David Fox, an eighth-generation North Carolinian and Raleigh native, is one of the most decorated swimmers of all time from the state. Whether competing for the Raleigh YMCA, Sanderson High School, North Carolina State University or representing the United States of America in international competition, Fox set records and won titles.
Success did not come easily at first for Fox. As a young swimmer, he often had to watch his peers swim the relays at Northbrook Country Club on teams that he was not fast enough to be on. A little more than a decade later, he led off the United States’ 4×100 Freestyle Relay that broke a world record and won Olympic gold.
As a high school swimmer, Fox captured one team, three relay and three individual high school state championships, setting state records in all of his individual titles. In 1988, he was named boys’ swimming North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) Athlete of the Year. That same year, Fox led the Raleigh YMCA men’s team to a national championship. In his last two years prior to college, he was a seven-time YMCA national champion, winning five individual and two relay titles while setting six state and YMCA national records.
A nationally heralded recruit, Fox chose to keep his talents in Raleigh and joined the N.C. State men’s varsity swimming team. In his four years as a Wolfpack, Fox rewrote the record books at both N.C. State and the Atlantic Coast Conference. When all was said and done, he had led his team to an ACC team championship, was a seven-time ACC individual champion and eight-time ACC relay champion, and was twice selected as the ACC men’s swimming MVP. Fox also was a team captain and Academic All-america his senior year. He capped off his collegiate career by winning a NCAA title in the 50-yard freestyle, erasing Olympic champion Matt Biondi’s college record in a blistering 19.14 seconds.
As collegiate swimming ended, Fox turned his eyes toward national and international competition. He wasted no time asserting himself on the international stage with a four gold-medal winnte performance at the 1993 World University Games. During the subsequent four years, Fox amassed six individual U.S. national swimming championships and many international victories. In 1995, he ended the year ranked No. 1 in the world in the 50-meter freestyle with a time of 22.23 seconds – the third fastest ever 50-meter freestyle by an American swimmer.
Following the 1996 Olympics, Fox hung up his goggles and added a Master’s from the University of North Carolina to his resume. During his three years in Chapel Hill, he served as an assistant coach on the Tar Heels’ staff, helping lead the men’s team to an ACC title.
After graduation, Fox joined Goldman Sachs, where he is currently a managing director enjoying a successful 17-year career. He resides in Atlanta with his wife, Richelle, herself an acclaimed swimmer, and their four children: Hannah, Jerry, Abigail and Dylan.
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