Paul Asmuth has seen it all in the open water, from local swims in Lake Berryesa and masters world championships to professional marathon swims, solo swims and English Channel crossings.
Over the years, he has served as a coach and administrator, fashioning USA Swimming’s national open water swimming community, strategies and action plans.
But the former accountant and Napa Valley winery executive is now focusing on his early loves as a kid growing up in Tampa, Florida: nature and wildlife management.
For someone with a focused mindset and the patience of a channel swimmer, he is taking the same talents that drove him across lakes, down rivers, over turbulent seas of the world. This next stage of his life seems very well-suited to the inductee in both the International Swimming Hall of Fame and the International Marathon Swimming Hall of Fame.
Asmuth and his wife Marilyn are currently working towards creating a 50-acre redwood forest near St. Helena’s wastewater treatment plant in northern California. A visionary plan based on the creation of a non-profit organization to manage the resources, the Asmuths want to help offset St. Helena’s greenhouse gas emissions and generate revenue through periodic timber harvesting.
“This land used to be forested, so in a lot of ways this is a reforestation project.”
Already Asmuth has served as a catalyst for implementation of his plans on the political side with various public committees already on his side supporting the effort to plant about 300 coast redwoods per acre. According to their plans half would be harvested within 15 years with 20% of the remaining trees harvested every five years. And the majestic redwoods can grow fast: 3-5 feet within 9 months.
Fast…very fast like Asmuth was as an NCAA pool swimmer at Arizona State University and on the professional marathon swimming circuit throughout the 1980′s.
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