Penn AC Gold Coaches

 Sabina Pierce



Paul Coomes - Director of Penn AC Gold
Paul's journey in rowing started 31 years ago, where he and 14 other students helped start up a small club rowing program at the University of Dayton. His 3+ years of rowing at Dayton could be termed forgettable in terms of results on the water, but his biggest victory came in helping to build a sustainable rowing program that was both competitive and respected not only within the rowing community but also by the University. When he graduated, he volunteered to coach Dayton’s men’s team and discovered his true passion in life – coaching. For three years, he led a Dayton men’s rowing team that experienced significant growth and improved results.

A move to Philadelphia in the fall of 1998 and a chance encounter led to Paul being hired as the Head Coach for Conestoga High School’s yet-to-be-started rowing team. While he had no experience coaching junior athletes, he was excited to have the opportunity to build a new program in what he considers to be rowing nirvana, Philadelphia and Boathouse Row. During his 18 years coaching Conestoga, he built the Club into one of the most respected rowing organizations in the region and the team into a scholastic sculling powerhouse, coaching crews to 21 Stotesbury Cup titles, 25 Scholastic National Championships and multiple gold, silver, and bronze medals at the USRowing Youth National Championships. He was named the 2007 Schuylkill Navy Coach of the Year, the 2014 American Junior Coaching Conference Girls Sculling Coach of the Year, and in what he considers to be the highlight of his coaching career, his girls 4x won the Schools/Junior 4x at the 2006 Women’s Henley Regatta.

His summers and falls as Conestoga’s coach were spent helping his wife start  and grow PA Rowing Camps, a summer program dedicated to teaching adults and juniors to row, as well as coaching crews of various levels for several clubs along Boathouse Row, including Penn AC, Undine Barge Club, Bachelors Barge Club, and Crescent Boat Club. Numerous crews under his guidance found success at the junior, intermediate, senior, and elite level. He served as the coach for the US Lightweight Men’s 1x at the 2009 World Championships in Poland. While at Undine, the Club won the Colgan Cup and the Marion D. Ventura Women’s Points Trophy in 2001. His crews also won the Head of the Charles in 2000, 2001, and 2003, the Canadian Henley in 2002 and multiple Club National Championships between 2000 and 2003.

Paul is a degreed engineer and when not involved in the sport of rowing has worked in various professional roles, including project management, product development and innovation management. Paul resides in the East Falls section of Philadelphia with his wife, Amy Giddings, and their three children.

Will Scully - Junior Men’s Head Coach/Recruiting Coordinator:
Will Scully comes to Penn AC from just down the road in Pottstown, PA at The Hill School, where he is the Head Boys Rowing Coach as well as a dorm parent and instructor of physics and mathematics.

Will began his rowing career in 2008 as a junior at Simsbury High School in Simsbury, CT. After graduating high school, Will continued his rowing career at Trinity College, in Hartford CT, where he won two New England Championships and one ECAC Championship, and helped Trinity secure the New England’s Points Trophy three years in a row. After his junior year, he was part of a crew that competed at the Henley Royal Regatta and was elected captain for his senior year.

Following his graduation, Will came to Philadelphia to continue rowing for the U23 program at Penn AC, and represented them at U23 Trials, Club Nationals and Canadian Henley. In search of more rowing and adventure, Will moved to Sydney, Australia, where he joined Mosman Rowing Club and trained with members of the Australian U23 and Senior National teams. He competed at the Sydney International Rowing Regatta, earning himself a finals spot in the Open 4x and Open 2x.

Upon returning home, Will took on volunteer coaching positions at Simsbury High School and Trinity, and served as the JV coach at Middletown High School until moving to The Hill School in 2016. Under Will, the Hill boys won the 2018 Stotesbury Cup Junior 4+ event and finished 4th in the 2019 Senior 4+.

Aside from coaching and teaching, Will is an avid musician and hiker and enjoys spending as much time outside as he possibly can.

Kristen Propst - Assistant Coach
Kristen Propst, returning for her third year with Penn AC Gold, is no stranger to the Schuylkill River or Penn AC. Currently, Kristen is an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator for St. Joseph’s University women’s team. Prior to St. Joe’s, Kristen was the boys and girls head coach at The Shipley School from 2019-2021 and the head novice girls and lightweight coach from 2017-2019. During her time at Shipley, they consistently qualified for SRAA Nationals, winning the girl’s lightweight quad in 2018 and placing third in 2019.

Kristen began rowing in 2010 at Lafayette College in Easton, PA. At Lafayette, Kristen was a 4+-year member of the varsity 8+, competing as both an open weight and lightweight. After graduation, she moved to Philadelphia to continue her rowing career at Penn AC, first as a part of Penn AC’s U23 program then as a member of Penn AC’s High Performance Team. During her six years as a member of the team, she was able to compete both domestically and internationally and race at World and Olympic team trials.
Beyond coaching, Kristen likes to spend time outdoors with her dog and is currently working on her Executive Master’s in Sport Business from Temple University.

Jacob Filby - Assistant Coach
Jacob joins Penn AC from Temple University, where he works with the women’s program. Prior to his stint with the Owls, he coached and recruited for the men's team at Trinity College, which culminated in a bronze medal at the 2022 IRA Championship. He began his coaching career at Unionville High School before continuing at Canisius High School, where he also taught Earth Science.

In the summer of 2022, Jacob was the Head Coach of the Vesper Boat Club Under-23 Men and Women. Under his direction, the squad won the Independence Day Regatta and USRowing Summer National points trophies as well as two titles at the Royal Canadian Henley — the women’s eight and women's four without coxswain.

Jacob attended the University of Delaware as an undergrad where he helped lead the program to two Dad Vail points championships. He then earned a Master’s degree in English from Trinity College.

Jacob is an avid reader of espionage fiction.

Seth Moyer - Program Leader
Seth is making his debut at Penn AC this summer as a Program Leader with the Gold Program. Seth joins us from Yale, where he rowed for four years with the Men’s Lightweight Crew. He has earned medals at the EARC Sprints in the 4th, 3rd, and 2nd varsity shells and contributed to two Jope Cup victories (2019, 2022).

Seth’s rowing career started in the Spring of 2014 at Ridley college. Throughout his Junior years, he earned medals at the CSSRA, Stotesbury Cup, Royal Canadian Henley, Head of the Charles, Western Cape Championships (South Africa), and CanAmMex regattas. He has a deep appreciation for the sport of rowing and hopes to aid in the development of the next generation of junior and collegiate rowers.



Sarah Low - Junior Women’s Head Coach/Recruiting Coordinator
Sarah Low is the Executive Director and Women’s Head Coach for the Atlanta Junior Rowing Association. During her five years as the head of Atlanta Juniors, the club has sent 18 boats to USRowing Youth National Championships, consistently qualified men’s and women’s boats for the Head of the Charles, and remains one of the top rowing programs in the Southeast. Atlanta Juniors has approximately 220 middle- and high-school aged athletes, coming from more than 75 schools around the North metro Atlanta area. Sarah has also been a member of the USRowing Junior National Team women’s coaching staff since 2018, most recently as Assistant Camp Director at ODP 2021, and has worked with the Southeast Women for several Youth Regional Challenges. Prior to AJRA, Sarah coached at Westminster Schools in Atlanta GA, and Sammamish Rowing Association in Redmond WA. She attended UNC Chapel Hill and graduated with a Masters in Sport Leadership from the University of Washington, and earned her Level III USRowing certification in 2019.

Bailey Chick - Assistant Coach
Bailey is the Head Coach of North Allegheny Rowing Association, in Pittsburgh PA. During her time with NA, the team roster has grown four-fold, gaining both speed and tangible results annually. Bailey’s coaching philosophy is rooted in community building and reflective personal growth for each athlete. It is her experience that from this foundation athletes can work toward both personal and team success. Some highlights from her time at NA have included podium finishes at SRAAs, Midwest Scholastic Rowing Championships, Stotesbury Cup, Head of the Hooch, Head of The Ohio, and the Head of the Schuylkill.

Bailey began rowing at Temple University in 2006, she has rowed for several programs along Boathouse Row. She holds an MFA from the University of Delaware, and a BA from The Tyler School of Art & Architecture. She has exhibited her work nationally and internationally and is currently a Teaching Artist and Head of the Creative Arts Department at Westinghouse Arts Academy Charter School. She also serves on the Midwest Scholastic Rowing Association Board as the Chair of Coaching Development.

Ciara O'SullivanCiara O'Sullivan - Assistant Coach
Ciara returns to Penn AC for her seventh year involved with the program. She spent her first two years with Penn AC Gold as a Program Leader, and currently works as the club's Social Media & Marketing Coordinator and leads the Diversity & Inclusion Committee.

She is currently in her second year coaching at Smith College in Western Massachusetts while earning her degree in Exercise and Sport Studies. As an assistant coach with Smith, Ciara is in charge of Novice walk-on development and facilitates recruiting while helping the team work towards an NCAA bid. She previously coached at Northfield Mount Hermon.

Ciara began her rowing career in 2011 at Archbishop Carroll High School in Radnor, PA with the school's inaugural team. She was recruited to row at Temple University, where she spent 4 years in the Varsity 8+ on the Division I Women's team. While there she helped the team to the program's top placement at the American Athletic Conference Championship in 2016 and a Dad Vail Championship in 2019. She served as the Student Athlete Advisory Committee Vice President in 2018 and 2019, as well as a Conference Representative in 2019.

Ciara continued her rowing career at Vesper BC following her graduation in 2019.

"I'm so excited to return to Penn AC Gold again as a coach this Summer. I learned so much coming up through the system as a Program Leader and the past two years as an assistant coach and look forward to helping directly develop the athletes. We get to help these kids become overall better athletes, from their performance on the water to the mental side of sport - it's a holistic approach that I can't wait to help implement."

Grace Trujillo - Program Leader
Grace began her rowing career in 2017 as a junior in high school with Lake Lanier Rowing Club, in Georgia. After graduating high school, Grace continued started her collegiate career at the University of Central Florida, where she helped her team win the ACC Conference Championship in 2019. After the pandemic, she transferred to Washing State University in the spring of 2021. She stroked the varsity 4+ placing 3rd at the PAC 12 Championship and took home a top-10 finish at the NCAA Championship. She was voted Transfer Athlete of the Year at WSU. Grace finished her collegiate rowing career in the varsity 8 for the Cougs. Grace also rowed a pair at the Canadian National Rowing Championships in 2022.

She started Coaching in 2020 at Atlanta Juniors Rowing Association in Roswell, GA. She started out with Learn to Row then lead the middle school squad, along with assisting the varsity women for 2 yrs. In 2021, she intern coached for the US Rowing High Performance Girls Camp. In summer 2022, she interned for US Rowing ODP Girls Camp.

Grace graduated in 2023 with honors with a BA in kinesiology from Washington State University. Her goal is to pursue collegiate rowing coaching.

When she’s not on the water, Grace enjoys playing with her dogs and cooking.

Coral KasdenCoral Kasden - Coxswain Coach
Coral Kasden is returning for her third summer as the coxswain coach with Penn AC Gold. She was previously the coxswain coach for the University of Virginia women’s team and the University of California Santa Barbara men’s and women’s teams.

Coral is a New York Athletic Club elite athlete member on the men’s rowing team. In 2022, she was in selection for the U.S. Women's Senior World Championships team Coral steered the US entry in her first appearance at the Henley Royal Regatta, in the Remenham Challenge Cup, making it to the semi-final. Coral previously made the 2019 U.S. Pan American Team as the men’s 8+ coxswain — the first female to cox internationally for a U.S. men’s senior team. She has also competed with the U.S. Women’s Training Center at the Head of the Charles in 2017, placing second in the Women’s Champ 8+ behind the "Great 8." She started her coxing career as a walk-on for the UC Santa Barbara men’s club team ('14) and has been racing for the New York Athletic Club almost every year since.

Aside from rowing, Coral is currently working on her PhD in gene therapy for Duchenne muscular dystrophy at the University of Pennsylvania. She is also an avid power lifter and is training for her first powerlifting competition.