On Wednesday, Diamond Bar High School students, parents and staff members, Walnut Valley Unified School District and local officials, and community members gathered on campus for the official groundbreaking of the Denis R. Paul Aquatic Center.
“The work being done at this extraordinary school continues our focus on teaching and learning,” said Superintendent Dr. Dean Conklin. “This is one of the largest projects ever undertaken in the District and we’re really excited about it.”
The aquatic center will have a 12-lane pool, locker room with restrooms, public restrooms, a coach’s room, a team room, pool storage and pool equipment buildings, and stadium seating with a shade structure. A two-story building will also be built, which will feature 20 classrooms. The project began several months ago, and phase five - construction of the pool and classroom building - is expected to take two years. Bond Measures S and Y, which were passed in 2007, will fund the facility and building.
“It wouldn’t have been possible without a visionary Board of Trustees and the partnership with this community,” Conklin said.
Diamond Bar High School Principal Catherine Real thanked Board of Trustees members Larry Redinger, Helen Hall, Nancy Lyons, Cindy Ruiz, and Phillip Chen, and retired member Carolyn Elfelt for their support, as well as the team of experts in facilities, construction, inspection, and architecture, and the school’s operations manager, Eric Gossett, who has waited 30 years for the project to be built.
Real said that without the community voting for the bonds and making donations, the aquatic center would not be possible.
“Thanks to you, Diamond Bar High has made a momentous step in our continued commitment to support the 4 A’s - academics, activities, the arts, and athletics,” she said. “As well as having great students, supportive parents, an excellent and caring staff, and wonderful administration, the 4 A’s are the foundation for our Brahma culture and undeniable success.”
The center is named in honor of Denis R. Paul, retired principal of DBHS who spent more than 30 years combined at both DBHS and Walnut High School.
“Denis made a lot about what is great about Diamond Bar High during his twelve year tenure as principal,” Redinger said.
Paul was on hand to celebrate the groundbreaking, and also helped unveil a new rendering of the center.
“It’s great to be home and to see so many friends,” he said. “There’s nothing more powerful than an idea that’s come. In this case, this is a dream that’s time has come.”