Steve Borowski inducted into Waterman Hall of Fame


It has been quite the week for Steve Borowski.

Only a few days after seeing his pupil Leahi Camacho complete the grueling Kaiwi Channel swim — and even jumping into the water to accompany her at one point — Borowski was inducted into the Hawaii Waterman Hall of Fame Thursday.

“It’s a tremendous honor,” Borowski said. “I have been inducted into multiple halls of fame the last few years, but this is really special.”

The Hawaii Waterman Hall of Fame was initiated in 2010 to create a lasting tribute to the Hawaiian Islands water sports legacy and honor the achievements of Hawaii’s standout watermen and waterwomen.

Borowski joins legendary Hall of Fame members Duke Kahanamoku, Eddie Aikau, Nappy Napoleon, Rell Sunn and Nainoa Thompson.

Others inducted Thursday include steersman, paddling coach and canoe designer, Tommy Conner, the first person and only woman to swim all nine Hawaii ocean channels, Linda Kaiser, Olympic swimming gold medalist, Bill Smith, and longboard surfing champion and youth community supporter, China Uemura.

Borowski has been involved with water sports nearly 60 years and has found success on every level.

As an athlete, he was a high school All-American in both water polo and swimming, and during his college career at Indiana was part of two NCAA championship teams and repeated as an All-American in both sports.

Borowski found even more success as a coach. As Punahou’s head swimming coach he led both the boys and girls teams to 13 consecutive state championships. At Kealakehe, Borowski led the girls swim team to a state runner-up finish last season and to the school’s only state title in any sport in 2010.

Borowski has contributed to the local swimming community as well, founding the Kona Aquatics, Kona Masters and Kealakehe High School programs.

Away from the pool, Borowski is an avid body surfer, spear fisherman and underwater photographer.