After five seasons as the Seawolves’ head Alpine coach, Sparky Anderson takes over the reins of the entire Alaska Anchorage ski program for the first time in 2012.
Prior to taking over head coaching duties this season, Anderson produced two national champions and seven downhill All-Americans throughout his five-year career from 2008-11 and 2002. Last season, Anderson helped the Seawolves to their fourth straight top-10 placing at the NCAAs, while finishing fifth overall at the RMISA / West Region Championships.
In 2010, Anderson produced his second national champion in Andreas Adde, who won the men’s slalom. UAA landed a combined five skiers as All-Americans and finished 7th at the national meet. Anderson also helped UAA to a program-best second-place finish at the RMISA / West Region Championships.
During his third season in 2009, Anderson helped UAA to a program-best fourth-place finish at the NCAA Championships, helped produced five All-Americans and six All-Conference members. Anderson guided freshman standout Alex Parker to four individual titles and the RMISA Women’s Alpine MVP, while UAA’s women’s Alpine team was the regional champion.
In his first season back with UAA in 2008, Anderson helped guide the Seawolf Alpine squad to one of its most successful campaigns in recent history, qualifying a full squad of six skiers to NCAAs for the first time since 1999, while two racers earned All-America honors. UAA claimed the overall RMISA Alpine title by combining to score a conference championship meet-best 256 points, producing nine top-10 results. All told, the Seawolf downhillers combined for 25 individual top-10 results during the 2008 season.
Anderson came as no stranger to UAA or collegiate ski racing, having coached the Seawolf Alpine squad in 2002, when UAA’s Aurore de Maulmont won the NCAA title in the giant slalom. Prior to coming to Alaska, he was the head ski coach at Brown University in Rhode Island from 1996-2000.
Prior to rejoining the UAA coaching staff, Anderson worked as the program director for the Alyeska Ski Club in Girdwood for seven years.
A 1991 graduate of the University of Nevada, Anderson earned four letters in skiing with the Wolf Pack, serving as team captain his senior season.
After college, he moved to Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, where he taught skiing for the Flori Woerndle Ski School. A year away from ski racing proved to be too much, and Anderson moved to Innsbruck, Austria, where he spent two years coaching a small FIS team at the Innsbruck International School. After leaving Europe, he moved to New England and spent two years coaching the Eastern Cup team at the Holderness School.
In addition to his international experience, he holds USSA’s highest level of coach’s certification and currently serves as the Alaska Division’s USSA coaches education clinician. Over the years, he has been invited to coach at multiple national and regional events.
Anderson grew up in Northern California and raced out of Bear Valley. He now resides in Girdwood with his wife Diana and daughter Kéa.