Olympic Silver Medalist, 1972 Games
Overseeing my personal journey and masterminding my conditioning and training regimen was COACH and MENTOR, Mr. Raymond Woods. Today, with 2 daughters of my own, it is with pride and awe that I look at what Ray’s coaching and faith in me enabled me to accomplish; maybe even laying the groundwork for future generations of women coaches and athletes.
Jaclyn Faulkner Mann
Olympic Trial Qualifier and World Ranked Swimmer
I was a Junior National Champion, state record holder, Top-16 time holder, and Senior National qualifier by the age of fourteen, and I qualified for Olympic Trials at the age of fifteen. In four short years, Coach Woods guided me into a situation that most swimmers only dream about—I was swimming among the fastest swimmers in the world.
All American swimmer and 1984 Olympic Trial participant
Ray took a chance on me. Taking me from a young budding National level swimmer to a full fledged 16 time All American swimmer and 1984 Olympic Trial participant. Our greatest achievement, I would say, is my winning the Univ of Miami ''s Most improved Swimmer award at the end of my freshman year. To my absolute delight and Ray''s credit, I discovered my name is written on a large plaque on the walls of the International Swimming Hall of Fame with the Title- University of Miami All Americans. I was listed among a handful of teammates Ray championed as well.
Koren Price Forster
Individual All-American and Olympic Trial Qualifier
Ray saw potential in me and coached me from a state champion into a nationally ranked swimmer in multiple events. Ray transformed me, and others, into top ranked swimmers with his innovative coaching.
Robert Killeen, Jr.
Master's World Champion
Coach Woods coached me and took me to Olympic trials; allowed me to train for and participate in the United States National Championships and most importantly welcomed me as a part of his club team under his watchful tutelage. In my experience Coach Woods is one of the very best and belongs in the Hall of Fame as surely as any coach presently enshrined. More importantly, I believe his greatness isn't just reflected by what his swimmers accomplished in the pool but how his principles and practices prepared them for life.
Former Head Coach, USC Women’s Swimming
For me, Ray helped guide my career where he took me to multiple national championships. While he’s probably best known for Dana Schoenfield’s spot on the 1972 Olympic Team and her eventual medal, he’s not received the credit he so richly deserves. Ray coached multiple age group champions, several CIF champions in Southern California, multiple community college champions while on staff at Cypress College, Southwest Conference champions while at The University of Texas, along with his early development of the University of New Orleans program. Not many coaches have had this wide an impact and as diverse a career as Ray has had. We could not count today the sheer number of swimmers he’s guided to bigger and better things, both in the pool and in life.