Lafayette Jefferson High School Coach, 1974 – Current
Jim Sharp began his swimming career in 1958 for Lafayette Swim Club under Coach Richard O. Papenguth, who was then Purdue’s head coach. In high school, he swam for Lafayette Jefferson from 1963 until 1967 and was a state finalist in the 200IM in 1965, 1966, and 1967. Jim went on to swim for Purdue from 1967 until 1969. He began his coaching career for the Lafayette Swim Club 1965 – 69 under Lafayette Jefferson Coach Pete Schug. Jim coached at Lafayette Jefferson High School in 1974 – 77 while completing a bachelor’s of arts degree at Purdue. Jim coached Chesterton High School in 1977 – 80 and he then went to Valparaiso High School from 1981 – 86. Jim was a head coach of the girls’ team and co-head coach with Skip Bird for the boys’ team. Jim currently coaches at Lafayette Jefferson and has been there since 1986. His teams have won 15 girls sectional titles and five boys sectional titles. Lafayette Jeff earned the first girls’ state championship title in 1975 and was also runner-up in 1987. He has helped to produce numerous All-American swimmers. Individually, he has been awarded the James Clark Memorial Award from Indiana Swimming and the American Swim Coaches Award of Excellence in 1990 and 1991 his coaching influence came from G. Wesley Mock (Purdue assistant coach) and his high school coach, Pete Schug. He has owned and operated the Lafayette Swim America Learn to Swim for 25 years and the Indy Swim Studio with partner/co-owner Eric Meyer of Zionsville. Jim has been married to his wife Carol for 35 years. They have one son, two daughters, seven grandchildren and one great granddaughter.