WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 41

O'Leary: Catalina Channel is a 21-mile
swim from Catalina Island to Rancho
Palos Verdes, California. Since 1927 there
have been less than 500 documented solo
crossings. The planning and logistics for
the event was a year-long process.
The challenges of crossing the channel are the distance, water temperature
and swimming at night. Rules prohibit
the use of wetsuits in competition as it
might assist the swimmer with buoyancy. The first goal was to acclimate to
cooler temperatures wearing a bathing
suit and a swim cap. The next challenge was conquering the fear of swimming in the ocean at night. In Catalina
the crossing starts in the evening to
take advantage of the calmer sea. I
was terrified to swim at night with a
chemlight, especially after a family
member made a point of telling me
that bright lights are used when fishing to attract  bait  fish,  which attract
bigger fish. My training schedule
included a six-hour swim each month
that started at 3 a.m. to feel more comfortable swimming at night. The final
challenge was preparing for the distance. Prior to Catalina my longest swim
was a nine-hour, 16-mile swim in Lake
Memphremagog, Vermont.
Endurance events are a team sport.
Swimming the Catalina Channel was
only possible by the incredible support
and encouragement from teammates,
friends and family.
WIN: Have you ever not been able to
finish a swim you had set out to do? How
did you manage your way through that?
O'Leary: A few years ago I was part
of a relay team attempting to swim
26 miles in Tampa Bay. Two hours into
the race a storm developed and the
swim was cancelled due to weather
conditions beyond our control. Success
in open water is never guaranteed; you

train, prepare but there is always an
element of luck, too.
WIN: Which one of the swims has
been your favorite, and why? How long
did it take? Have you met any other interesting people during your swims?
O'Leary: My favorite swim and first
significant channel was the Strait of
Gibraltar in 2016, traversing the busiest
shipping channel in the world between
Europe and Africa. Aside from training,
luck is a principal element of this swim.
The week of the swim we arrived in
Tarifa, Spain, also known as the windsurfing capital of the world. The weather
and sea conditions were not cooperative
for a swim the first few days. With three
days remaining in my trip before flying
home I received the call to meet on the
dock at 4 a.m. the next morning.
The anticipation of this moment
resulted in no sleep the night before and
I knew it was going to be long day. As
the boat departed the marina in Spain,
the city lights of Morocco glowed in
the distance and the boat captain calls
out "five-minutes." The start is surreal;
conditions are average, the current
is not favorable and the boat is bopping in the swells. The captain shouts
"now" and at the moment I jump from a

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E&S

perfectly good boat into cold, dark water.
After five hours and 11 minutes the picture of endless blue starts to change and
rock beds appear on the ocean floor to
signal the end of the swim. Completing
the Strait of Gibraltar provided me the
confidence to take on other channels.
WIN: Do you have any big swims
planned in the future?
O'Leary: My goal is to achieve the
Triple Crown of open water swimming
by completing the English Channel,
Catalina Channel and swimming
around Manhattan. The fall of 2018, I will
compete in a race around Manhattan
called 20 Bridges and have a reservation
to swim the English Channel in 2020.
WIN: How does long-distance swimming inspire you in your life, and is there
any correlation to what you do back at
the agency?
O'Leary: Managing an agency presents
unique challenges each day. Endurance
swimming taught me to embrace change
and to keep moving forward.
●
Erin O'Leary is shareholder and vice
president of Shelly, Middlebrooks &
O'Leary, a wholesale managing general
agent based in Jacksonville, Florida.
Contact her at: ekoleary@shellyins.com.

E&S

Susie Ramirez

President of Operations/Marketing

INSPECTIONS

Loss Control Property & Casualty Insurance Inspections.
Residential and commercial loss control property and casualty insurance inspections.
Over 25 years of experience in industry.

Phone: 888-265-6704 | Fax: 888-265-3186
susie@esinspectionsinc.com
www.esinspectionsinc.com
P.O. Box 222525
Newhall, CA 91322

738397_ESInspections.indd 1

F A L L 2017
| 41
4/14/15
12:53 AM


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of WIN Magazine - Fall 2017

Do Hurricanes Have a Silver Lining?
Underwriting Marijuana
The Cyber Insurance Conundrum
Writing Data Security Into Law
Gauging Risk, Reaping Reward
Simply Seamless
Moving to the Cloud: 3 Migration Strategy Models and the 6 R’s.
In the WIN-NER’s Circle
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Intro
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - bellyband1
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - bellyband2
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - cover1
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - cover2
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 3
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 4
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 5
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 6
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 7
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 8
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 9
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 10
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 11
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Do Hurricanes Have a Silver Lining?
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 13
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 14
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 15
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 16
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Underwriting Marijuana
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 18
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 19
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 20
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 21
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 22
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 23
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - The Cyber Insurance Conundrum
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 25
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Writing Data Security Into Law
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 27
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 28
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 29
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 30
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Gauging Risk, Reaping Reward
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 32
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 33
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 34
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 35
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Simply Seamless
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 37
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - Moving to the Cloud: 3 Migration Strategy Models and the 6 R’s.
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 39
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - In the WIN-NER’s Circle
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 41
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - 42
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - cover3
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - cover4
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - outsert1
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - outsert2
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - outsert3
WIN Magazine - Fall 2017 - outsert4
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