Francis M. Carroll '60
The magic of skating captivated Frank Carroll as a boy growing up in Worcester in the 1950s. He devoted himself to practice, going back again and again to the ice to perfect the art and skill of the sport that had become his passion--and, in the process, he caught the eye of a legendary figure skating coach, Maribel Vinson Owen.
There was no ice rink at Holy Cross at the time, so this dayhop walked and hitched and hurried between home and class and the Worcester Skating Arena at Webster Square where he practiced and trained. A Dean's List scholar, he nurtured his love of reading, and to this day television cameras will catch him rinkside with book-often a historical novel-in hand.
Rev. Joseph A. Glavin, S.J., dean of athletics at Holy Cross was a critical figure for young Frank: Father Glavin was the administrator who made sure Holy Cross funded some skating expenses so Frank could represent the College at the national figure skating championships, which he did throughout his four years on the Hill. "It was very scary to go back to that Quonset hut each year and ask him to renew the donation," he once said.
Yet he prevailed in the face of both fear and competition, coming home with the bronze medal in the 1959 United States championship, and the silver medal in 1960.
After graduation, Frank toured the world and skated for five years with Shipstads & Johnson Ice Follies, a touring skating show and precursor to the Ice Capades. He moved to California and took a turn at acting but soon found himself back on the ice- discovering that he had an equal passion and determination for mentoring and coaching.
Frank Carroll's figure skaters have won six world championships, four junior world championships, three Olympic medals, and twenty world championship medals.
His athletes-Linda Fratianne, Michelle Kwan, and Evan Lysacek among them-are as devoted to him as he is to them.
Inducted into the World Figure Skating Hall of Fame and the United States Figure Skating Hall of Fame, Frank was named the 1997 Olympic Coach of the Year. After serving as head coach for more than ten years at the Toyota Sports Center in El Segundo, California, he has moved to a new rink in Cathedral City-where Olympic class figure skaters from all over the United States, as well as Canada, China, Korea, Japan, Russia, The Philippines and Australia have come to train with Frank Carroll.
For his dedication to excellence and his tireless support and mentoring of world-class athletes, the College of the Holy Cross presents to Francis M. Carroll the Sanctae Crucis Award.