TROY, Mich. – Goldfish Swim School Franchising, LLC, the premier learn-to-swim franchise concept, announces four of its standout franchisees – Scott Payne, Dana Schuchardt, Amy Strozier and Alex Tyler – as recipients of the International Franchise Association’s (IFA) prestigious Franchisee of the Year Award. The annual recognition honors a select group of franchisees who have demonstrated excellence within the franchise community. Goldfish Swim School tops the list with the most franchisees recognized on this year’s list of winners.

The Franchisee of the Year Award, sponsored by IFA’s partner Paychex, recognizes leading franchisees who exemplify at least one of IFA’s “Open for Opportunity” core pillars: Community, Workforce, Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion, and Veterans. The winners are presented during the association’s annual convention award ceremony, Feb. 29 – March 1 in San Diego, California.

“To have four of our franchisees recognized with this prestigious award is a testament to the caliber of individuals we’ve welcomed into the Goldfish Family,” said Chris McCuiston, CEO & Co-Founder of Goldfish Swim School. “Their passion and commitment to the brand has not gone unnoticed, and to see them accept these awards among franchising’s greatest players is a true honor. From embracing our core values, to volunteering to take on new projects, to adding more schools to their portfolios, they’ve helped set the foundation for continued growth and opportunity while committing to our brand’s lifesaving mission.”

Goldfish Swim School Franchisee Winners:

  • Scott Payne, Goldfish Swim School – ColumbiaFox ChapelPeters TownshipSilver SpringSuperiorWexfordScott, and his wife Christy, have become true empire builders in the Goldfish system. Their schools have consistently been at the top of the list for reviewer ratings, have hosted numerous charitable events, celebrated team members and the community and go above and beyond to provide members with a Golden Experience. They are committed to making a true difference in all their communities and recently partnered with the Make-a-Wish Foundation, collectively raising $45,000 and granting 10 wishes.
  • Dana Schuchardt, Goldfish Swim School – Park Ridge and Goldfish Swim School – Gilbert: Dana opened her first school at the age of 28. Now, she and her husband Alex are the proud owners of two locations in Illinois and Arizona. Her journey started as a swim instructor at Goldfish Swim School’s flagship location in Birmingham, MI, and after a professional role in marketing, she came back to her roots as a former competitive swimmer to pursue entrepreneurship and fulfill her passion of helping kids be safer in and around the water. Her story provides inspiration to young female leaders to follow their passions.
  • Amy Strozier, Goldfish Swim School – Dayton: Amy, along with her husband Andrew, have been making waves with Goldfish since 2016. Year after year, Amy rises to the occasion as a powerhouse female leader. Her dedication to relationships, empowering team members and defining what it truly means to be ingrained in the community is simply unmatched. In addition to spending 40-plus hours a week at the swim school, she has established partnerships with Dayton’s Children Hospital and Safe Kids of Greater Dayton to spread the important message of water safety, while also donating thousands of dollars in swim scholarships to the Miami Valley Down Syndrome Association and providing opportunities with grant funding from the USA Swimming Foundation. Amy was also a finalist for the 2021 Better Business Bureau Eclipse Integrity Awards and was named one of Dayton’s Most Remarkable Women. This all comes on the heels of Goldfish Swim School – Dayton being named the brand’s 2020 School of the Year.
  • Alex Tyler, Goldfish Swim School – St. Charles and Goldfish Swim School – Glen Ellyn: Alex became a Goldfish owner in 2013 at the age of 23. Over the years, he has become a standout multi-unit, millennial franchisee who has built a culture of uplifting team members, families and neighbors, while committing to community giveback. Alex is well known in the system for organizing and executing several giveback initiatives, including an annual Belize tripto provide swim lessons and other amenities to local children living in a remote fishing village in Gales Point. Amid the pandemic, Alex worked to coordinate fundraising efforts throughout the Goldfish Swim School community to make a long-lasting impact on the Gales Point village. Generous donations have allowed for the installation of internet service to further equip the children and their teachers with educational resources that will provide new and exciting opportunities to learn.

Consistent among all Goldfish Swim School franchisees is a commitment to the brand’s core values– Creating a Golden Experience, Providing Wow! Customer Experience, Treating People with Integrity, Compassion & Trust, Meeting & Exceeding Expectations so you see Extraordinary Results and Making a Big Deal Out of Life’s Accomplishments by Remembering to Celebrate. The leading swim school franchise brand looks to its franchisees to incorporate these guiding principles into the daily operations of their swim schools, as well as in their communities.

Consistently outranking its competition, Goldfish Swim School continues to prove itself as a top-rated and most established swim school franchise in the space. Today, with 125-plus locations open and more than 120 in development, the brand is on track for strategic franchise expansion across North America. Riding this wave of success, the company is looking for qualified and engaged individuals seeking multi-unit opportunities who are involved with their community, have a passion for water safety and are hungry to dive into the world of franchising.

For more information on Goldfish Swim School and its franchise opportunity, Contact us today or call 248-801-1850.

About Goldfish Swim School

Founded by husband and wife team Chris and Jenny McCuiston, Goldfish Swim School provides swim lessons and water safety instruction to infants and children ages four months to 12 years. Classes are offered by specially trained instructors in a safe, child-friendly and fun environment using their research-based philosophy called The Science of SwimPlay®. Headquartered in Troy, Michigan, Goldfish Swim School was established in Birmingham, Michigan in 2006, and opened its first franchise location in 2009. Recently, the brand was recognized by Entrepreneur in its Franchise 500® ranking, Franchise Times’ Fast & Serious List, and Inc. Magazine’s Top 5000. Goldfish Swim School is currently in the process of expanding franchise opportunities throughout North America, with more than 125 schools open, and an additional 120+ in development in more than 30 states and Canada.