Former William & Mary swim coach Dudley Jensen died Friday, September 14th at the age of 93.
Jensen was a staple of the William & Mary men’s swimming & diving program for almost 40 years. He joined the squad as the head coach in 1951 and remained at the helm of the program until his retirement from the team in 1989.
When Jensen arrived at the school he was not only named to the men’s swimming & diving coaching staff, but served as an instructor in the physical education department. During his tenure with the school he was eventually promoted to full Professor of Physical Education and then Kinesiology. He was the Chair of the physical education department from 1978-84 and served as the the university registrar from 1964-1975.
After retiring from coaching the swim & dive program, Jensen remained at W&M serving in his other roles for seven more years, eventually retiring in 1996.
One year before his retirement from the school, Jensen was inducted into the W&M hall of fame for his accomplishments as a coach. Jensen had coached six W&M hall of fame athletes in his 33 years with the program.
Jensen coached some of the programs most historic seasons, including 15 winning seasons and W&M’s only undefeated season (10-0 in 1969-70). The Tribe finished second at the Southern Conference Championships five-times under Jensen’s leadership. With a cumulative record of 170-144-1, Jensen is the winningest coach in W&M swimming history.
Aside from his coaching, Jensen enlisted in the Army Air Corps following his high school graduation in 1943. He served on active duty until 1946. He continued in the Air-Force Reserves from 1947-58 where he reached the rank of First Lieutenant. He also served in the Coast Guard Reserves from 1946-86. In ’86 he retired as a Lieutenant Commander. Jensen’s other accolades included his work as a basketball official for 45 years and a Lay Minister at Bruton Parish Church in Williamsburg for 20 years.
He is survived by his daughter, Nancy Jo Weston and her husband Peter Weston.