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Janelle Atkinson-Wignall
Janelle  Atkinson-Wignall

Assistant Coach


Christine Pedersen Continues To Impress In The Pool

The UConn swimmer is set to swim in three more international events this summer

Janelle Atkinson-Wignall is in her fourth year as an assistant coach at The University of Connecticut working primarily with the distance and middle distance freestylers, and serving as the recruiting coordinator for the men's and women's teams. She has coached the Huskies to re-writing the 200, 500, 1000 and 1650 freestyle records for both the men's and women's teams, has her hand in 6 of the 10 relay records, as well as the Men's 200 backstroke, 200 and 400 I.M. records.

The 1999-2000 National High School Swimmer of the Year, Atkinson-Wignall earned 10 All-America honors while competing at the University of Florida. She also received three First Team All-Southeastern Conference accolades, had three top-three finishes in three years at the NCAA Championships and was a three-time SEC Champion. Atkinson-Wignall was also part of the 2002 team that became SEC Champions and was on the SEC Academic Honor Roll four times.

A native of Kingston, Jamaica, Atkinson-Wignall is a two-time Olympian competing in the 2000 Sydney, Australia and 2004 Athens, Greece Games. She finished fourth in the 400-meter freestyle and ninth in the 800-meter freestyle in Sydney. For the 2012 London Olympic Games, she returned home and served as a sports analyst on television during the swimming portion of the Games, which aired throughout the entire Caribbean.

In 2002, the Jamaica native won a pair of bronze medals in the 400-meter and 800-meter freestyle events at the Commonwealth Games held in Manchester, England. At the 2001 Goodwill Games in Brisbane, Australia, Atkinson-Wignall claimed a silver medal in the 800-meter freestyle and a bronze medal in the 400-meter freestyle event. She was a triple silver medalist (200, 400 and 800-meter freestyle) at the 1999 Pan-American Games in Winnipeg, Canada, and took part in the 2003 Games in The Dominican Republic. She is a seven-time recipient of the Jamaican Swimmer of the Year award and a six-time nominee for the Jamaican Sportswoman of the Year.

Before joining the Huskies, Atkinson-Wignall spent four seasons at Wright State University, coaching the distance group and directing the fundraising swim lesson program. Before WSU, she worked a year as a community relations officer for the Jamaica Information Service, a subsidiary of the Embassy of Jamaica, in Washington, D.C., and she was an assistant coach at Western Kentucky University before that. On the international scene, Atkinson-Wignall was selected as the head coach for the Jamaican National Team at the 2009 Swimming World Championships in Rome, Italy. In July 2013, USA Swimming appointed her to become the Head Coach for the first Southern Zone Diversity Summer Select Camp.

Atkinson-Wignall earned a bachelor's degree in tourism and hospitality management from The University of Florida in 2005.