The Power of the Powers: One Family’s Fenwick Legacy

Hall of Fame basketball coach, health teacher, and father. State Champion point guard, psychology teacher, and daughter. The Power Family has dominated the basketball court, Fenwick classrooms, and the hearts and minds of numerous Friars for numerous years.

Coach Dave Power and his daughter Erin Power are in the record books for their talent on the basketball court. The Power legacy began in 1992 when Fenwick made the decision to go coed. Coach Power was hired to cultivate and run the girl’s basketball program, which he successfully achieved. However, Coach Power’s accomplishments are not solely limited to the court. Everyone knows that he is a star basketball coach, but very few people know that his coaching success started on the softball field. Athletic Director, Scott Thies, said, “He was actually our head softball coach of our programs and is responsible for our best finish in girl’s softball history. In 1998, we finished 4th in state and the first two female all state athletes were his softball players.” Already making history from the start, Coach Power knew how to coach his athletes and teach them to be their best. Although mentoring young athletes proved to be enriching, nothing made him more proud than being able to coach his daughter Erin on Fenwick’s girls basketball team.

Prior to her basketball career at Fenwick, Ms. Power came to the basketball camps starting at a young age. Coach Power shared how Erin embodied the shield early on. One of his favorite memories is when she was in 6th grade and she had won 5 of 6 possible trophies on the basketball court. Already wearing the shield, she gave these trophies to girls who might not have been awarded otherwise. Coach proudly retells the story with admiration of his daughter, even after so many years. Finally coming to Fenwick, Erin was a young star. With the foundations of her basketball career already in place, Erin and her teammates took their games to the next level. In Erin’s senior year in 2007, she led her team to the State Champion title, with her dad as her coach. Reliving this glorious memory, Coach Power says, “She was a coach before she even was a coach. When a player was down on the other team, she would pick them up. There’s so much more to her than just being the best point guard. She has true leadership qualities.”

After graduating high school, Erin continued to play basketball at the University of Pennsylvania. She later returned to Fenwick to coach alongside her dad. Connecting with athletes in different ways, the father-daughter team responds to players differently. Mr. Thies shares, “They have very different personalities. With Ms. Power being a younger female athlete, her perspective was great support to the game. While Coach Power could relate to the kids in ways no one else could and get to know them on varied levels.”

Coach Power has won two state championships at Fenwick. Additional accolades include being named the 2nd most winning coach in all of Illinois and being voted into five hall of fames. But the ability to coach his daughter, as well as alongside her, helped make these remarkable achievements become possible. This powerful duo has changed Fenwick’s basketball program, including the lives of many Friars. Even looking around the school, the Power’s names are everywhere. Celebrating his thousandth win, Coach Power’s name is forever engraved into the floor and hearts of the current and future athletes of Fenwick High School. Even after these many achievements, being a father is the highest honor on Coach Power’s list. “I’m not allowed to say how proud of my daughter I am, but I really am.”