Cullen Jones, Pro Swimmer.
Former North Carolina State University swimmer Cullen Jones, 22, is making a name for himself in the world of professional swimming. Currently training for the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, Jones was recently signed to a seven year, multimillion dollar endorsement deal with sports apparel giant Nike.
He is the first African American male to win a gold medal at the World University Games. As a part of the USA's 4 X 100 freestyle relay team at the 2006 Pan Pacific Games, he became the first African American to break a world record in swimming in an Olympic contested event. At the USA Swimming National Championships, he swam the fastest 50 meter freestyle time in the world this year. Also this year he won the NCAA Championship from NC State, and his fourth ACC Championship.
Though turning pro has precluded him from competing on NC State's swim team, Jones continues to attend the university, majoring in English with a minor in Psychology.