Dear Shipley Community,
After an extensive national search, I am delighted to announce that Justin Cooper will be Shipley’s next Director of Athletics. A consummate coach-leader, Justin brings broad and deep experience in independent schools as a teacher, coach, advisor, dean, and lower school head.
Justin is currently the Director of Athletics/Head of Physical Education and Health as well as Upper School Dean of Students at the Jack M. Barrack Hebrew Academy. Over the past eight years, Barrack Athletics has earned 20 Tri County and Penn Jersey League championships, established an Athletic Hall of Fame, joined the Pennsylvania Association of Independent Schools Athletic Association (PAISAA) and received the Tri County Independent School League Award for Sportsmanship in 2014, 2016 and 2018. He is currently the Varsity Baseball and Cross Country Coach.
Justin served in the same capacity at Doane Academy in Burlington, NJ from 2006-13. At Doane, Justin oversaw the construction of soccer and softball fields, established the Spartan Hall of Fame, revitalized a dormant crew program and saw Doane Athletics host and win their first-ever state playoff games in basketball, baseball, and softball. In 2009, Justin was named the Head of the Lower School and awarded the HeadMaster’s Cup.
Justin holds a B.S. in Sport and Recreation Management from Temple University where he also played Varsity Baseball and was given the Owl Club Award for Academic Excellence. He earned an M.S. in Educational Leadership, Management and Policy from Seton Hall University and holds a N.J. Principal Certification. Justin served as the Penn Jersey Athletic Association President from 2008–16. He is currently the Vice Chair of the Board of Directors at the West Hill School in Rosemont, PA.
Justin’s vision for what school athletics and physical education can be is inspiring and aligns perfectly with Shipley’s definition of Educational Excellence. Furthermore, over his career he has proven his ability to realize such a vision -- from leading teachers and coaches, to engaging families and alumni, to inspiring students and athletes. Perhaps, most exciting, Justin is able to do this in a way that invites an entire school community not only to share the vision, but contribute to making it a reality. We are thrilled to welcome such a leader to Shipley.
Justin resides in Bryn Mawr with his wife Christie, daughter Emory, and son Campbell. For over fifteen years, Justin has been an administrator, teacher, coach, advisor and mentor. He has a passion for coaching coaches and helping students feel known, loved and strongly encouraged to find their unique potential.
Justin said: "I am honored and excited to serve as Shipley's next Director of Athletics. Shipley's commitment to character and well-being is strengthened and reinforced through strong and vibrant Physical Education and Athletic programs. These are vital in the development of each student, allowing for self-definition and growth while creating resiliency and compassion. Being a Gator is a privilege, which by utilizing the outstanding facilities and knowledgeable and caring coaching/teaching staff we can create a vehicle where students have significant, positive experiences and build lifelong relationships and memories while competing at high levels. I look forward to working with our talented teachers, coaches, student leaders and broader community who are at the forefront when it comes to delivering the mission of our school. Go Gators!!"
I am deeply grateful to our Search Advisory Committee and everyone who participated in the search. During his visit to Shipley, Justin met with students, teaching colleagues, administrators, and parents. While community feedback on Justin’s visit was strong, what stood out were the comments of those who had the opportunity to interact with him.
Justin clearly felt the warmth and commitment of the Shipley community and he is looking forward to future visits to campus and joining us this summer. Please join me in welcoming Justin Cooper to the Shipley community.
Michael G. Turner
Head of School