Penn AC Hires Sean Hall as Head Coach

by: m_wherley



Penn AC Rowing Association is pleased to announce that it has hired former National Team athlete and coach, M. Sean Hall, as head coach of its High Performance Group, U23 and Masters programs effective October 1st.

“I’m really excited about this opportunity to work again with Penn AC,” said Hall. “Penn AC did so much for me and my success as an athlete, and I’m really excited to bring this back to the club.”

“Sean brings a ton of credentials as an athlete and a coach in both sweep and sculling, and we believe he will be able to reinvigorate Penn AC’s High Performance Group as well as our other programs,” said Penn A.C. President Mike Wherley. “We also believe Sean can be a catalyst for working closer with the broader Schulykill Navy community to develop athletes and crews that can make the U.S. National Team and compete for medals at international events.”

Hall is a three-time Olympian, a World Champion (men’s eight 1994) and a two-time Pan Am Games gold medalist, rowing and sculling on the U.S. National Team from 1991-2000. He placed 4th at the 1992 Olympics in the men’s coxed four, and he also won bronze medals at the World Championships in the men’s 4- in 1993 and the men’s eight in 1995.

Hall made a mark at Penn AC as an athlete, beginning in 1990, when he came to the club to row for Ted Nash after graduating from Rutgers, through 1993, when he and fellow Penn AC teammates Tom Bohrer, Jeff Klepacki, and Jim Neil represented the U.S. in that bronze-medal men’s 4- noted above.

As a coach, Hall served as the Assistant Coach to Igor Grinko from 2001-2004 at the Augusta Training Center in Augusta, GA, where he coached the U.S. Lightweight Men’s Quad to some of its highest results in recent history, with a bronze medal at the 2003 Pan Am Games and a 4th place finish at the 2004 World Championships.

Hall then moved to Asia where he worked for nearly 10 years with national teams, province teams and clubs in China, Taiwan and Hong Kong. He has shown a knack for elevating performance of his crews, resulting in some of the highest finishes in national and/or international competition for these teams, with medals of all color at the Chinese National Games, Chinese National Championships, Taiwan National Championships, Asian Championships, and Asia Cup events.

“This chance to come back to the U.S. and work with American athletes is something I’ve been seeking for some time now,” said Hall. “I am thankful that Penn AC, with its history of success and its key location, has recognized this and has chosen me to be a part of its new plan to build on this history.”

Penn AC plans to leverage Hall’s coaching accomplishments. Wherley said, “Many athletes coached by Sean have represented and continue to represent their countries at the international level, and we hope to see more U.S. National Team athletes coming out of Penn AC in future years.”

Hall is also encouraged by the recent willingness of the Philadelphia clubs to work together. “What makes Boathouse Row unique in the world is not just the array of historic buildings, but the camaraderie of the clubs,” said Hall. “I’m happy to see Penn AC taking a leading role in the push to rebuild the Schuylkill Navy and create a true destination for athletes to train and improve in their quest to represent the U.S.”

“With Sean’s experience and skill at all levels of the sport, we feel that he will be key to the short- and long-term success of our club,” said Wherley. “We welcome him to the Boathouse Row community and look forward to years of success under his direction. We also sincerely thank John Riley and Curt Browder for all their dedication as volunteer part-time coaches over the past few years.”

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