Mom of the Year: Shannon English - Washington FAMILY Magazine: For Moms

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Mom of the Year: Shannon English

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Posted: Thursday, May 24, 2018 3:57 pm | Updated: 4:03 pm, Thu May 24, 2018.

"Being a mom taught me to coach from a perspective of the whole child, not just the athlete."

Mom to Leo, age 27, Kristyne, age 26, Braidon, age 21, Pierce (age 20, passed away last year), Germantown, MD

Nominated by Janine Nickel:

Shannon is one of the most amazing women I know. As a year-round swim coach, she is caring, attentive and encouraging to all of the kids who swim with her. She treats them each as if they were her own. Shannon lost her own son, Pierce, in a car accident last June, yet she continued to love and care for her swimmers as she did her other children. She continued to encourage, support and show understanding even though she was hurting. In her grief and in her son’s memory, Shannon has devoted her energy to helping others through fundraising for Manasseh House.

Q&A with Shannon English


Professional swim coach

Three fun facts about you and your family:

1. We are a super competitive family.

2. We are all Orioles fans!

3. All three of our kids followed in the family tradition of swimming and/or coaching.

What advice would you give to new or expectant moms?

Do not let society dictate your norm — you have to figure out what is most right for you and your family.

What goals do you have for your family?

My goals are to spend more time with my family and to foster the new adult friendships I have with my children. As for my kids, I want them to find their passion and what makes them happy.

How has motherhood changed your outlook on life?

I learned to appreciate life, the little things and the quiet moments.

Describe a favorite mom moment.

My favorite mom moments were the extra- tight hugs when they were little, the times when I saw my kids choose to do the right thing over the popular things, and our family vacations where we had precious time together without life distractions.

What’s your superpower?


What are three things you use every day that you can’t live without?

My treadmill, coffee and painting.

What is your secret to balancing life/family/work/motherhood?

I keep my eye on what’s truly important to me, live my faith, prioritize, stay flexible and keep true to my heart.

How has motherhood helped you succeed at work?

Being a mom has taught me the importance of seeing each child as the unique person he or she is. In the workplace, I deal with so many different ages and personalities of kids. Motherhood has helped me to learn to look for how each child I work with ticks and how I can reach each child in the way that is best for him or her. Being a mom taught me to coach from a perspective of the whole child, not just the athlete.