U.S. Figure Skating Announces Coaches of the Year
|Priscilla Hill - Coach of the Year|
(6/1/04) — Three outstanding individuals were awarded for their hard work and achievement in the sport of figure skating at the 2004 Professional Skaters Association (PSA) and Ice Skating Institute Joint International Conference and Trade Show in San Diego, Calif., May 28-30. Priscilla Hill was named Coach of the Year, Pamela Gregory won Developmental Coach of the Year, and Tom Dickson took the Paul McGrath Choreographer of the Year award.
Hill was selected as the 2004 Coach of the Year for her work with 19-year-old U.S. champion Johnny Weir. The 2003-04 season was a breakthrough for Weir, who withdrew from the 2003 State Farm U.S. Figure Skating Championships after sustaining an injury during his free skate. Under Hill's guidance he came back to win his first U.S. senior title in 2004 and went on to place fifth in his first trip to the World Figure Skating Championships.
Hill, who coaches at the University of Delaware in Newark, Del., was a national competitor herself. She has been a member of the U.S. Figure Skating Sanctions and Eligibility Committee and is a current member of the PSA Board of Directors. This is the first time she has won this award.
The Coach of the Year award is given each year to the individual or team of coaches who have made a significant impact on an athlete's performance at the highest levels of national and international competition. The winner is selected by the U.S. Figure Skating Coaches Committee and PSA Board of Directors and must exemplify the best behavior within the U.S. Olympic Committee (USOC), U.S. Figure Skating and PSA coaching standards, serving as a role model to both skaters and other coaches.
Pamela Gregory was selected as the 2004 Developmental Coach of the Year for her work as the head coach of 2004 U.S. junior champion and World Junior silver medalist Kimmie Meissner. Gregory coaches at the University of Delaware, and she previously won this award in 2001 in partnership with Jeff DiGregorio.
The Developmental Coach of the Year award is presented annually to the individual or team of coaches who have made a significant impact on an athlete or athletes competing nationally at the developmental levels of juvenile, intermediate, novice and junior. As with the Coach of the Year award, the winner is selected by the U.S. Figure Skating Coaches Committee and PSA Board of Directors and must exemplify the best behavior within the USOC, U.S. Figure Skating and PSA coaching standards, serving as a role model to both skaters and other coaches.
Tom Dickson of Colorado Springs, Colo., won his third Paul McGrath Choreographer of the Year award in three years. In 2004 he choreographed programs for Ryan Jahnke, who placed fourth at the State Farm U.S. Championships and at the Four Continents Championships; Matt Savoie, U.S. men's bronze medalist; Jordan Brauninger, World Junior bronze medalist; and Trina Pratt & Todd Gilles, U.S. junior dance bronze medalists.
The Paul McGrath Award is given each year to a choreographer who has created a program or programs performed by skaters at the U.S. Championships or World Championships that are considered to be of exceptional quality under the rules of figure skating. The winner is selected by the U.S. Figure Skating Coaches Committee, International Committee and PSA Board of Directors.