When this former high school football coach’s daughter, Allison, began competitive diving in 1973, Eldon Godfrey switched allegiance to a whole new sport, and rose to the highest levels of volunteerism. With his organizational skills and insight, within three short years, he was elected president of the Canadian Amateur Diving Association and two years later the Aquatic Federation of Canada on whose committee he remained for 16 years, serving as Canada’s Chef de Mission for the Third FINA World Championships in Berlin.
Extending from national to international participation, Eldon served in every office of the Amateur Swimming Union of the Americas, now known as Union Americana de Natacion. In 2011, he was named Honorary Life President and presented with the R. Max Ritter Award for contributing to the advancement, understanding and good will among nations.
In 1980, he was appointed to the FINA Technical Diving Committee, and served as a Member, and as the Honorary Secretary and Vice Chairman for 16 years. For 13 years, he was elected a member of the FINA Bureau, serving as liaison to the Technical Diving Committee responsible for decision making policies as they affect FINA. He is now a FINA Honorary Life Member.
Eldon has been a regional and international judge and referee at four Olympic Games, four World Championships, eight World Cups, three Pan American Games and other international events. He has received the FINA Gold Pin, Canadian Sports Award, Alberta Achievement Award and the Calgary Booster Club Award. He has never failed to recognize that it all started in Calgary, at the grass roots level, and he continues to judge diving at the local level.
Together with his wife Carlie Jean, they have received Canada’s Irene McDonald Award for Volunteerism to Diving, for over 40 years of service.