The Inter-Collegiate Sailing Association (ICSA) honored three individuals for their contributions to the sport of college sailing by inducting them into the ICSA Hall of Fame at a ceremony last night, during the Gill Coed National Championships, at San Diego Yacht Club.
Hannah L. Noll (Milwaukee, Wis.) was recognized with the James Rousmaniere Award for student leadership; Joseph J. Sullivan, Jr. (New York, N.Y.) was honored with the Lifetime Service Award; and Edward "Skip" Swikart III (Rumson, N.J.) was awarded Outstanding Service by a volunteer.
The Hall of Fame was established in 1969 to honor individuals for either undergraduate competitive achievement in sailing or outstanding leadership and service to the establishment, development and growth of the sport. The names of the inductees will be added to the ICSA College Sailing Hall of Fame, which is on permanent display in the Robert Crown Center at the U.S. Naval Academy (Annapolis, Md.).
The James Rousmaniere Award for Student Leadership honors an undergraduate for extraordinary achievement in leadership whose efforts made a significant contribution to the development, progress and success of his or her club, team, conference or the ICSA.
In a nomination statement for Hannah Noll, the MCSA Commodore, Jacob Bruce states:
First, she [Noll] has provided immense leadership for her team in her time there, taking them from a non-threat to a consistent top-level competitor on the conference scene - this past weekend is even stronger evidence of that (they qualified for Coed Nationals and barely missed Team Race Nationals). She ran the team for a while, and has also provided a strong foundation for leaders following her footsteps by establishing traditions and hiring a coach.
She has also shown strong leadership at the Conference level. She held the post of MCSA Publicity Secretary, showcasing the Conference’s strengths effectively. Even more importantly, she is a binding force for the whole conference. Everyone in the MCSA knows who Hannah Noll is, and she knows him or her. In the past several years, she’s been at all of the major MCSA regattas, providing a warm smile and a positive comment before every race and after every awards ceremony. The MCSA rests on a balance of camaraderie and competition, and Hannah exemplifies both.
In short, Hannah has proven just how much one person can do, and has brought her team and her conference along behind her. She has my strong endorsement as MCSA Commodore and the support of the whole MCSA.
Noll reacted to her nomination with pride, “I am grateful for the opportunity to bring the national spotlight to the UW-Milwaukee Sailing Team and the MCSA,” she says, “Growing fellowship in the sailing community is what motivates me. A successful, competitive conference is built on the foundation of lifelong friendships.”
In Noll’s time on the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Sailing Team, they placed third in the Coed and Team Race Conference Championships, qualified for College Sailing Nationals three times and hired a coach. All of this was accomplished on a team that has only been in existence for eight years.
The Lifetime Service Award recognizes a career of extraordinary service to college sailing, as a volunteer or professional. Joe Sullivan has been a part of the college sailing scene since 1955 and in a nomination statement for Sullivan, Gail Turluck, Chair, ICSA Afterguard, explains his devotion to the sport and Fordham University:
Joe saw a notice in Fordham Magazine urging alumni, who were varsity athletes and had not received an invitation to the Arthur Daley Memorial Dinner, to call the alumni office. He learned that the team had dissolved in the early 1970s, but the university shared a list of 80 former members. He sent out a mailing to see if anyone was interested in a reunion. It was held in February 1999 and the question asked by the 20 attendees was, ‘Why don’t we have a Sailing team today?’ A display was set up at the Club Fair in September and 102 students signed up, of whom 29 had sailing experience.
That fall, former Commodore and MAISA President Charles “Bud” McEntee ’72 and Joe assisted seven undergraduates who were committed to rebuild the program. Sailing was recognized as a club sport, and Fordham was accepted as an associate member of MAISA in January 2000. For travel purposes, the university required that the team have a coach. None was available, so Joe volunteered to coach for a few months until someone could be hired. That was 15 years ago, and he’s still active in the program.
In September 2001, a fleet of six 420s was purchased and Morris Yacht & Beach Club on City Island became Fordham’s homeport. Today, via a joint venture with the Columbia Sailing Team, neighbors on City Island, the teams share a 30-boat fleet of 18 420s and 12 FJs. Fordham resurrected the Jesuit Open and Greater New York Dinghy Regatta, and raised enough money to hire a professional coach. This past year, Fordham was ranked as high as 12th nationally among coed teams and 15th in team racing.
Joe continued his exemplary service to Fordham and to MAISA until last year. When he appeared as a contestant on Wheel of Fortune in 2015, he sported his Fordham sailing tie and made sure all watching knew of his devotion to Fordham Sailing. He served on the ICSA Hall of Fame Committee from 2006-2015. He was awarded the US Sailing One-Design Leadership Award in 2001. Joe was recognized with the Outstanding Service-Volunteer Award by the ICSA in 2005.
“I was stunned and humbled when Mitch [Brindley, ICSA President] told me because I had retired from Fordham Sailing last June 30 and it was totally unexpected,” says Sullivan about getting the news of his honor.
"As voluntary Coach and Director of Sailing of my own college team for 16 years, I did it for the love of the sport and my alma mater,” he says. “The Jesuits preach the importance of being a ‘Man or woman for others’ I can state categorically, that while the financial income was nil, the psychic income was enormous.”
“To be honored for doing what I love is simply icing on the cake,” says Sullivan.
The Outstanding Service by a Volunteer award honors an individual who has volunteered their time, talent and resources to advance the interests of college sailing at the club, team, conference or national level.
In a nomination letter for Skip Swikart, Mike Callahan, MAISA Conference Commissioner, states:
Over the years Skip has spent countless hours as the Alumni Advisor to his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania Sailing Team. Skip has spearheaded the efforts to raise funds for the club program and they recently completed a purchase for 18 new boats. Skip is also the primary recruiter of team members for a team that is building for the future. Skip is the adult presence for University of Pennsylvania Sailing Team and is the real driving force behind their success. Skip is not just a behind the scenes guy. He also helps run events for the team and is a mentor to all the Penn Sailors. His enthusiasm and dedication to University of Pennsylvania Sailing deserves recognition on the ICSA level.
He's attended many MAISA and ICSA meetings representing the interests of club teams like the University of Pennsylvania. Skip is a smart talented individual who is a great resource for MAISA as well as the University of Pennsylvania.
“Back in 2004 my friend and mentor, Jack LeFort, asked me to take over the role of Graduate Advisor to the Penn Sailing team because his grandson, Bryce was going to be attending Penn,” says Swikart.
“Since then it has been a real pleasure to work with some outstanding captains of this student run team and to help where I can with advice and logistical support,” he says.
“I'm humbled that the committee has considered me for this award, and I'm happy to share it with the student leaders who have worked so hard to bring Penn Sailing to a new level each year.”
Contact: Jennifer Mitchell | Toile à Voile for ICSA | firstname.lastname@example.org | 763-234-8286 m.