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Born and raised uptown in Harlem, Gladys considers the water home and lives by the motto: “You cannot keep a mermaid out of the water.” She took her first lesson at the age of five, and began swimming competitively when she was ten for the Riverbank Redtails. As a young swimmer, Gladys competed at meets nationwide, along with a variety of international competitions in the Caribbean Islands. She swam all four years of high school for the A. Philip Randolph Campus High School, where she set the school record in the 200 yard freestyle. Gladys also answered an early calling to music; for the last 15 years she has thrived on the violin, piano, and congas, and has volunteered teaching music at the Harlem School of The Arts. Gladys is now busy continuing her studies in Criminal Justice.