After a nationwide search, Hollins has announced Ned Skinner will become the university’s head swim coach and director of the Northen Swim Center beginning August 1. He succeeds Patrick Richardson, who led the swim program for the past four years.
“I am absolutely thrilled that our current and future Hollins swimmers will enjoy the expertise of an experienced and successful coach like Ned Skinner,” said Director of Athletics Myra Sims. “When you look at his background, it is clear that Ned is extremely knowledgeable in the technical aspects of the sport. Yet, he is also invested in mentoring student-athletes outside of the pool, and in treating each swimmer as an individual. Aside from his collegiate coaching experience, Ned has an extensive history with camps, clinics, and private lessons. He is very well-connected with youth swimmers and coaches in the region and will be able to broaden the reach we have in recruiting for the swim program. I am confident we are getting a coach who can take Hollins swimming to the next level.”
Skinner comes to Hollins after a distinguished, 20-year coaching career at Virginia Tech. Starting in 1998, Skinner led the Hokies to four conference championships while seeing more than 100 student-athletes turn in All-American performances. In addition to the All-Americans, Skinner coached 50 individual conference champions, a trio of Olympians, and a member of the USA National Team. During an eight-year stretch from 2008-2016, Skinner coached five different USA Olympic Trial swimmers who reached the semi-final and final rounds. In 2016-17, Skinner also served as a coach on the United States Swimming National Team staff. In addition to collegiate and national team coaching, Skinner presented at multiple swim camps and clinics as well as various national conventions and conferences, and founded and served as director of the Maroon and Orange Swim Camps from 2000-2018. In 2004, Skinner earned his Ph.D in education curriculum and instruction from Virginia Tech.
“I am very excited to become a part of Hollins University and serve in the athletics department,” Skinner said. “I felt an immediate connection with Myra Sims and am looking forward to working with her. The opportunity to teach classes and be the aquatics director will be enjoyable new challenges for me. I am also impressed by the other coaches and administrators and feel a real camaraderie among the staff, which is important to me. The current group of swimmers is eager to get started and I am excited by their unity and commitment to the program.”
Prior to coming to Virginia Tech, Skinner served as director of swimming at the College of William & Mary, a position he held from 1994-1998. He earned his bachelor’s degree at Louisiana State University before launching his coaching career as a graduate assistant at Ohio University. Upon receiving his M.S. in athletic administration degree at OU, Skinner got his first chance to be a head coach at Central Connecticut State University.