Will Porter, who begins his 13th year as the head coach of the Bulldogs in 2011-12, has built Yale into one of the most successful women's crew programs in the nation. The Bulldogs have earned a berth in the NCAA Championships in each of the last 11 years with four top-five finishes (2004 - 2nd, 2007 - 4th, 2008 - 4th, 2009 - 3rd). Under his direction, four Yale boats have won NCAA titles, including back-to-back championships by the varsity eight in 2007 and 2008. The 2009 second varsity also won an NCAA crown. Yale again had the fastest crew in the nation in 2010 when the varsity eight captured the NCAA grand final for the third time in four years.
Porter was named Yale's head coach in 1999 and has led the varsity to an 99-23 record. He was named the 2007 College Rowing Coaches Association National Coach of the Year and has been selected the New England Coach of the Year by the CRCA four times (2002, 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2010). Porter's crews have won the NCAA Championship, the Eastern Sprints Championship, the Ivy League Championship, the Intercollegiate Rowing Association Championship and the Women's Henley Regatta. In addition, Yale has won the Charles Willing Team Trophy at Eastern Sprints in three of the last four years.
The 2007 varsity eight NCAA title capped off the first undefeated season for the Bulldogs since 1979. In 2004, Yale placed second as a team at the NCAA Championships, the highest finish in school history. In 2005, Porter guided the Bulldogs to the EAWRC Sprints title, an 11-1 regular season record and a No. 2 national ranking. Porter won his second Sprints title in 2007 where the Bulldogs also captured the Willing Team trophy for overall supremacy.
In his first year as Yale's head coach, Porter took the varsity from the Third Level finals at the EAWRC Sprints the previous year to the Grand Final. In 2000 the Yale varsity raced to a regular season record of 7-3, finished sixth at the EAWRC Sprints and qualified for the NCAA Championships. In 2002 the Yale varsity won the silver medal at the Sprints and the second varsity won the bronze medal. In addition, Yale qualified for the NCAA Championships and finished fifth as a team. In 2003 Yale finished fourth at the Eastern Sprints and again qualified for the NCAA Championships as a team. In 2004, Porter's varsity won the bronze while his second varsity took the silver at the Eastern Sprints. At the NCAAs, the varsity won the silver medal and Yale finished second as a team.
Prior to being named head coach, Porter served as the novice coach at Yale. In his first year, the novice women finished fourth at the EAWRC Sprints. The following year, both the first (8-1) and second (5-2) novice crews took bronze medals at the Sprints. Porter also successfully coached at Stanford, Rutgers and Dartmouth before coming to Yale as the novice women's coach in 1997.
Porter has been involved in rowing for more than 20 years. His career as a national team oarsman was highlighted by a silver medal race in the 4- at the 1991 Pan American Games in Havana, Cuba, and a bronze medal performance in the 8+ at the 1993 World Championships in Racice, Czech Republic.
Snider, the 2009 CRCA New England Assistant Coach of the Year, is in his 17th year coaching at Yale. Since 2005 Snider’s coaching duties have been the YWC varsity four “A” and “B” boats. At the Eastern Sprints, the “A” boat won the gold medal in 2007, 2008 and 2009, while the B boat captured the Sprints title in 2008 and 2009.
In 2012, the “A” boat claimed third at the first Ivy League Championship Regatta and then went on to finish fourth in the country at the NCAA Championship. In addition, the “B” boat went undefeated in league racing and won the gold medal at the Ivy Regatta.
Snider also has been an assistant heavyweight coach from 1996 through the 2005 season. In 1997, he led the undefeated third varsity to an Eastern Sprints gold medal as well as a season ending victory over Harvard with the combo crew at New London.
In 2005, the Yale heavyweight crew senior class established the Jamie Snider Cup, which is presented annually to the winner of the combo race at the Yale-Harvard Regatta.
Prior to Yale, Snider was the head coach for the Cincinnati Junior Women's Program. There, his crews medaled at the Stotesbury Cup Regatta and Midwest and American Rowing Championships.
The Yale women’s crew will have an Olympian on staff starting in 2012-13. Sarah Trowbridge, who rowed in the double sculls at the London Olympics, has been named an assistant coach at Yale.
“Sarah will be a great addition to our program,” said Yale head coach Will Porter. “She has a wealth of knowledge having rowed at Michigan and trained with the USA team. As a sculler, she will bring new ideas and a different prospective to our program. I have no doubt her tireless work effort as an athlete will carry over into her coaching and recruiting at Yale.”
Trowbridge, a native of Guilford, Conn., has been a member of the USRowing Senior National Team since 2007. She won a gold medal in the double at the 2007 Pan American Games and competed in four World Championships, winning a silver medal in the quadruple sculls in 2009 and the straight four in 2008.
“I am really looking forward to joining the Yale team,” Trowbridge said from England where she is preparing for the Olympics. “Coming to the position with such a recent history as an athlete will help me to relate my coaching more accurately to the rowers. I also hope to excite the women with my experiences on the Olympic team and encourage them to push the limits on their own speed.”
Trowbridge also has coaching experience. She served as Georgetown’s freshmen lightweight women’s coach for two seasons. In 2008, she led the novice lightweights to a silver medal at the EAWRC Sprints. In addition, she has served as an assistant coach for the Bishop Dennis J. O’Connell High School and the Ann Arbor Rowing Club teams.
A 2006 graduate of Michigan, Trowbridge was a three-year letterwinner for the Wolverines. She helped Michigan to three top-10 finishes at the NCAA Championship and was a three-time recipient of an Athletic Academic Achievement Award, presented to athletes who have a 3.0 or better grade point average.