Washington Names Don Flora Volleyball Assistant Coach
March 23, 2004
SEATTLE- Don Flora, who led the University of La Verne women's volleyball program to the 2001 national championship and four consecutive SCIAC conference titles, has accepted the assistant coaching position at Washington, head coach Jim McLaughlin announced today.
Flora leaves La Verne after 11 seasons, including six years as the head coach. In that time, he was named Division III National Coach of the Year in 2001 by the AVCA and Volleyball Magazine, compiled a 131-33 record and guided the Leopards to two Final Four appearances. In addition, La Verne set a new SCIAC record for consecutive wins in league competition, which currently stands at 36 matches.
'I'm thrilled about the wonderful opportunity to join the staff at the University of Washington,' said Flora. 'Even with my successes at Laverne, I've always had other administrative duties. At Washington, I can focus solely on training phenomenal athletes and be a part of one of the best programs in one of the strongest conferences in the country. My wife and I are looking forward to living in the beautiful Northwest and raising our daughter there.'
Flora has also coached two national players of the year in Ryan Winn, named Division III National Player of the Year by Volleyball Magazine in 2001, and most recently Amy Smith, who was named American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) Division III National Player of the Year for 2003. Last season in '03, Flora coached three AVCA All-Americans in Smith, Tricia Schary and Amy Kratochvil. He has also coached four SCIAC Conference Players of the Year during his tenure as Leopard coach.
'We are excited about Don joining our volleyball staff here at the University of Washington,' said McLaughlin. 'I have known Don since 1990 and have always had a high regard for his talents as a coach and as an administrator. He is a tireless worker and an excellent recruiter. With his background and experience, he will be a great compliment to Leslie and me. If you look at his record, it is clear that he knows what it takes to be successful yet, like us, he always does things the right way. More importantly, he is a wonderful individual who fits nicely with the other members of our staff. I look forward to Don, his wife Jeanne, and their new three-week old daughter Annika becoming a part of the UW volleyball family.'
After serving as assistant on the women team and heading the men's volleyball program from 1993-97, Flora took over as head coach in 1998. Two seasons later, Flora captured the first of four consecutive SCIAC crowns in 2000, guiding La Verne to the West Regional Finals. A year later Flora led the Leopards to a 27-1 overall record, defeating Wisconsin-Whitewater 3-2 in the NCAA Championship to capture La Verne's third national women's volleyball title in school history.