Teresa Coffey – Lifetime Service to Wrestling
Players Photo

Teresa Coffey

Honor: Lifetime Service to Wrestling
Year: 2022
Gender: Female
About Teresa:

She began her involvement with San Diego County wrestling in 1994 as a dedicated wife and the mother of three girls. When her oldest daughter Tabitha began wrestling, Teresa was there working a table. She learned how to score bouts and then write up weight brackets.

Coffey helped to coach, and she earned her officials license in 1995. After obtaining Bronze Level certification with AAU-USA Wrestling from 1996-2000, Teresa could not stay away from the sport even after each of her daughters began and ended their careers on the mats. She has worked consistently for over 28 years with high school and youth wrestling programs in San Diego and Imperial counties, helping coaches and program staff to coordinate and administer tournaments.

Teresa was head pairer for the CIF San Diego Section for 24 years, and she was the head pairer for the San Diego/Imperial County Kids Wrestling Association 15 years. She has been a dedicated volunteer with San Diego ComicCon for the past eight years.

Her responsibilities now are in more of a supervisory role, helping to train scoring table staff and relieving tournament workers. Coffey is usually the first one on the scene at 5:00 am, and she is among the last to leave after awards are given out. Teresa does much of the thankless, behind-the-scene work that often goes unnoticed but is greatly appreciated by coaches, officials and tournament participants.

Coffey served our country for over 20 years after joining the U.S. Navy in 1982. She became an electronics technician in 1983 and earned the Naval Achievement Award, serving during the first Gulf War in Operation Desert Storm which earned her the Desert Storm Shield Service Medal and later the Humanitarian Service Medal during Operation Restore Hope off the coast of Somalia.

She was away on military service when her husband Joaquin called to tell her that he enrolled their daughters in a wrestling program. The news initially concerned her with the thought, “What are my girls doing wrestling in a boys’ sport?” Looking back now, Teresa is glad that she trusted her husband, and she is grateful for all that she has learned and accomplished through her experiences in the sport of wrestling. At the 50th anniversary of Title IX this year, participation in girls’ wrestling is exploding across the country, from 4,975 high school participants in 2005 to almost 30,000 during the 2019-20 season, according to NFHS statistics.