Anthony Nesty

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Anthony Nesty
Personal information
Full nameAnthony Conrad Nesty
National teamSuriname
Born (1967-11-25) November 25, 1967 (age 54)
Trinidad and Tobago
Height5 ft 11 in (1.80 m)
Weight172 lb (78 kg)
College teamUniversity of Florida (U.S.)

Anthony Conrad Nesty (born November 25, 1967) is a former competition swimmer from Suriname who was an Olympic gold medalist in the 100-metre butterfly event in 1988. He is currently the head coach of the Florida Gators men's and women's swim team at the University of Florida, where he attended school.[1]

Early years[edit]

Anthony Nesty was born in Trinidad in 1967,[2] the youngest of five children in his family. Nesty's family migrated to Suriname when he was seven months old, and he started swimming at the age of 5. Nesty trained and competed in Suriname and the Caribbean through the beginning of his teenage years. He represented Suriname along with his sister, Pauline, at the 1983 Pan American Games.[3] After placing twenty-first in the 100-metre butterfly at the 1984 Summer Olympics in Los Angeles at just 16 years old, Nesty enrolled in The Bolles School in Jacksonville, Florida, a prep school with an athletic program known for training elite, world-class swimmers. While training under Bolles coach Gregg Troy, Nesty broke the prep school 100-yard butterfly record held by Pablo Morales.[4] Breaking Morales's record was the beginning of prominent successes for Nesty. He graduated from the Bolles School in 1987.[5]

International swimming career[edit]

Nesty returned to international competition at the 1987 Pan American Games in Indianapolis, Indiana, winning a gold medal in the 100-metre butterfly and a bronze medal in the 200-metre butterfly.[4]

At the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, Korea, Nesty edged American favorite Matt Biondi by one one-hundredth of a second to win the 100-metre butterfly; he finished the event in 53.00 seconds and Biondi in 53.01.[2] Nesty is the only Olympic medal winner from Suriname[6] and after winning his Olympic gold medal, he was unbeaten in the 100-metre butterfly event for three years. Nesty was the first black male athlete and only the second black athlete to win an individual Olympic medal in swimming following Enith Brigitha at the 1976 Summer Olympics, and only the second South American swimmer to win an Olympic gold medal after Alberto Zorrilla in the 1928 Summer Olympics.

Nesty's victory in Seoul was a momentous social and political event for Afro-Caribbeans. The Suriname government commemorated his gold-medal performance on a stamp and on gold and silver coins. A 25-guilders bank note portraying an illustration of a butterfly swimmer was printed in his honor. Surinam Airways named one of its planes after Nesty (this plane was destroyed in an accident while operating as Surinam Airways Flight 764),[7] and the indoor stadium in Paramaribo was renamed for him.

Nesty won gold medals in the 100-metre butterfly at the Goodwill Games in 1990 and the FINA World Aquatics Championships in 1991. At the 1991 Pan American Games in Havana, Cuba, he again won a gold medal in 100-metre butterfly and a silver in the 200-metre butterfly.[4] He attempted to defend his 1988 Olympic gold medal in the 100-metre butterfly at the 1992 Summer Olympics in Barcelona, Spain, but finished with a third-place bronze.[2] At the 2008 Summer Olympics Parade of Nations of the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, while long retired from competition as an athlete himself, Nesty was invited to be Suriname's flag bearer at the opening ceremony.

College swimming career[edit]

After winning his gold medal in Seoul, Nesty accepted an athletic scholarship to attend the University of Florida in Gainesville, Florida, where he enjoyed a successful swimming career with the Florida Gators swimming and diving team under coach Randy Reese and coach Skip Foster from 1989 to 1992. During his four years of National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) competition, he won three consecutive NCAA individual championships in the 100-yard butterfly (1990, 1991, 1992), one in the 200-yard butterfly (1990), and one as a member of the team's 400-yard medley relay team (1991), and received sixteen All-American honors. Nesty also won eleven Southeastern Conference (SEC) titles—five in individual races and six as a member of Gators relay teams.[8]

Nesty graduated from the University of Florida with his bachelor's degree in 1994.[9]

Life after competition swimming[edit]

Nesty was inducted into the International Swimming Hall of Fame (ISHOF) as an "Honor Swimmer" in 1998,[4] and the University of Florida Athletic Hall of Fame as a "Gator Great" in 2002.[10][11]

In the mid 1990s, Nesty returned to the Bolles School as a member of the swim coaching staff.

Nesty was the associate head coach for the Florida Gators men's swimming team.[9] As of June 4, 2018, he is the head coach for the Florida Gators men's swimming teams.

In June 2021, Nesty was named Assistant Coach to the U.S. Men's Olympic Swim Team. [12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Anthony Nesty - Men's Swimming & Diving Coach". University of Florida. Retrieved April 25, 2019.
  2. ^ a b c, Olympic Sports, Anthony Nesty. Retrieved June 4, 2011.
  3. ^ Stutgard, Ricky W. (1990) De eerste Surinaamse sportencyclopedie (1893–1988). Alberga, Paramaribo. ISBN 9991494936. p. 137
  4. ^ a b c d International Swimming Hall of Fame, Honorees, Anthony Nesty (SUR) Archived November 24, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved July 23, 2011.
  5. ^ The Bolles School, Athletics, Bolles Olympic Medalists Archived 2015-07-07 at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved March 6, 2015.
  6. ^ "Anthony Conrad Nesty". Retrieved August 18, 2021.
  7. ^
  8. ^ UF Swimming & Diving 2009–2010 Media Guide, Gator History & Records Archived 2011-07-11 at the Wayback Machine, University Athletic Association, Gainesville, Florida, pp. 88–89, 90, 92–93, 96–97, 99, 102–105, 107, 117 (2009). Retrieved June 4, 2011.
  9. ^ a b, Swimming & Diving Coaches, Anthony Nesty Archived April 2, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. Retrieved June 4, 2011.
  10. ^ F Club, Hall of Fame, Gator Greats. Retrieved December 15, 2014.
  11. ^ "Nine Former Gators Named to UF Hall of Fame Archived 2015-09-24 at the Wayback Machine," (April 4, 2002). Retrieved July 21, 2011.
  12. ^ Anthony Nesty named assistant coach to the men's US Olympic swim team

External links[edit]

Olympic Games
Preceded by Flagbearer for  Suriname
Seoul 1988
Succeeded by
Preceded by Flagbearer for  Suriname
Beijing 2008
Succeeded by