Lew Fellows began attending Sierra in the fall of 1955. Already an accomplished skier, he joined the Ski team at Sierra College. While at Sierra under the tutelage of Paul Chesney; Fellows became the 1955 undefeated Conference Champion in Jumping, Downhill, and Slalom. Lew then transferred to UC Berkeley in 1956 where is met his wife of 49 years Ann Fellows. He continued to ski competitively until 1959, when he transferred to San Jose State to pursue his degree in physical education and to play on the SJSU Soccer team (1959-1961).
After a stint in Army Intelligence, Lew returned to San Jose State to complete a Masters Degree in Physical Education and to begin his teaching/coaching career. His first position was at Newark High School; where he coached Football, Soccer and Track and Field. Lew then moved on to teach and coach at Cedarville High School where he coached Basketball and Track. He was offered a position as an Instructor and Head Ski Coach at Sierra College in 1971. He completed his professional career at Sierra College in 1996, after 26 years of service during which time he not only served as a coach and instructor but as the Athletic Director and Dean of Health, Physical Education, and Recreation.
During his tenure as Sierra’s ski coach the ski team was named California Intercollegiate Ski Association Regional Champions, six-time National Collegiate Ski Association Regional Champions (NCSA) and placed in the top five nationally at the NCSA Championship between 1980 and 1986 with a second place finish in 1981 after triumphing Mid-West powers, Ivy League universities and other prestigious schools. Fellows had an on-going battle with Boston College’s coach who couldn’t believe this exceptional team came from a community college and from California no less! Lew was instrumental in the formation of the NCSA and served for five years as Vice President.
As a result of Fellows’ leadership, Sierra College was named by Sports Illustrated as one of the Top 10 Skiing College’s in the nation and in 1983; he and his team were honored by the California Assembly with a resolution regarding their second place finish in the NCSA Nationals.
An avid skier/racer, Lew’s love for the sport inspired him to take his passion beyond the race and into the arena of philanthropy. Even while teaching and coaching he gave back to the community; he became involved with Auburn Ski Club Associates. Fellows served two terms as the President and seven years as the Nordic Vice President. He assisted with the Junior Nationals at Boreal Ridge and the Cross Country program. Lew was also Chief of Course for the Snowshoe Thompson XC race for many years and became a certified Jumping Judge in 1974.
Lew has three children; Gordon, Michele and Brook. Both Michele and Brook are graduates of Sierra College. These days he enjoys gardening, woodworking, traveling and spending time with his grandchildren. He continues to give back to the community today by serving as an Auburn Ski Club board member.
“Sierra teaches you how to play the college game, it gets you prepared.”
Favorite Professor: Professor Floyd Wilmuth
Favorite Class: Geology
Best advice you received while at Sierra College: When I worked in administration I was told, “You can get in a lot of trouble for commissions, not omissions.”
Fondest Memory: My fondest memories of Sierra College are the campus staff and faculty picnics at the beginning of each year, that are now known as convocation and the P.E. department BBQ’s.