O’Hara Hall Pool to Be Named in Honor of Sue Petersen Lubow
KINGS POINT, N.Y., Aug. 30, 2023 – The United States Merchant Marine Academy Athletic Department is happy to announce that the pool located inside O'Hara Hall will be named to honor the Academy's beloved and much admired long-time Athletic Director, the late Susan "Sue" Petersen Lubow.
A ceremony will be held prior to the Mariners' first home meet this season, the annual USMMA Memorial Invite, during the morning of Saturday, Nov. 18. The ceremony will begin at 9:30 a.m. in the lobby outside the pool in O'Hara Hall, followed by announcements prior to the meet which start at 10:45 a.m. before action gets underway in the pool at 11 a.m.
"As we dedicate the United States Merchant Marine Academy O'Hara Hall Pool in honor of Sue Petersen Lubow, we acknowledge her extraordinary legacy as a coach, mentor and administrator," commented fifth-year Athletic Director Kristofer Schnatz. "Her unwavering dedication to our student-athletes and her unparalleled leadership has left a lasting mark on our institution, inspiring generations to come."
Petersen Lubow started her Kings Point career in 1979 as the head coach of the men's and women's swimming & diving teams as well as a physical education instructor. She was, at the time, the first female to be the head coach of a varsity men's team at any service academy. During her time at the helm of the men's and women's swimming & diving teams, the two programs combined for a 148-67 record over 11 years. Petersen Lubow coached 48 male and female All-American swimmers and divers, including both a men's and women's NCAA Division III Individual National Champion.
She quickly rose through the ranks at USMMA and earned an appointment as Athletic Director in 1989. This groundbreaking move marked the first time that a woman held that position at any of the United States Federal Service Academies. In March 2014, after a very successful 25 years at the helm of the department, she announced that she was stepping down from her position as the Academy's Head of Physical Education and Athletics but would remain on staff as a fully tenured professor. She died in October 2015 after a battle with pancreatic cancer.
"I am thrilled that the pool will be named after Sue to honor her legacy!" exclaimed Commander Sean M. Tedesco, USMMA's Assistant AD for Aquatics and Head Swimming & Diving Coach. "Sue was an outstanding swim coach who lifted the program to a national level. As the Athletic Director, she was a visionary leader who elevated the PE&A Department over the course of her 25 years at the helm."
Petersen Lubow was one of the most accomplished administrators in the history of the Academy. Her contributions were immeasurable. In the 25 years she served as Athletic Director, she expanded USMMA Athletics to over 20 teams and helped develop the Blue and Gray Club, Athletic Hall of Fame, Blue and Gray Golf Classics and other numerous traditions and awards.
An honorary alumna of the USMMA Alumni Association and Foundation, Petersen Lubow graduated from Springfield College in 1975. She went on to earn her master's degree in health education from Hofstra University in 1979. Prior to coaching, Petersen Lubow was a national competitor in AAU age group swimming. She was also an All-American in the 200 individual medley as well as the medley relay (1971-72) at Springfield College, where she also served as the team captain. Petersen Lubow was inducted into Springfield College's Athletic Hall of Fame in 1991 and the New York Metropolitan Swimming Hall of Fame in 2009. She was a two-time New York Open Champion and in 1972 was an Olympic qualifier for trials.
For her contributions to the Academy and Intercollegiate Athletics in general, Petersen Lubow was inducted into the USMMA Athletics Hall of Fame in 2014 and then also the ECAC Hall of Fame (as part of its inaugural class) in 2015. She is also a member of the Metropolitan Swimming Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 2009.
The remainder of the USMMA swimming & diving schedules will be announced closer to the start of the 2023-24 season.
Last updated: Wednesday, August 30, 2023