Heather Barney enters her fourth season at the helm of the Trinity women's rowing team, having guided the Bantams to a No. 13-ranking in the final USRowing/Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association (CRCA) National Division III Poll last season. After a successful fall highlighted by a third-place finish in the varsity-four race at the Head of the Charles Regatta, the Bantams came in 11th and twelfth, respectively, in the New England Rowing Championship (NERC) and the National Invitational Rowing Championship (NIRC) regattas, and posted a 5-10 record in varsity-eight dual races last spring. In 2017-18 season, Barney helped guide the team to a nine-win improvement in dual racing (10-10) and a top-ten finish in the New England Rowing Championships (NERC) Regatta. Barney came to Trinity in the summer of 2016, after leading Nova Southeastern University to back-to-back NCAA Division II Championship Regattas in 2015 and 2016 and serving as an assistant coach at Bucknell University, Georgetown University, and her alma mater, Williams College, prior to her two years at Nova Southeastern.
In Barney's first two seasons, Trinity jumped from 15th to ninth in the NERC Regatta and 16th to 12th in the National Invitational Rowing Championships (NIRC) Regatta, while two-year captain Antonia Bowden was named to the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) All-Conference Team both years. Kirsten Thiim was named to the NESCAC All-Conference Team the last two springs, adding to the growing list of successful rowers Barney has produced. The Bantams have had 35 honorees on the NERC, NIRC and NESCAC All-Academic teams over the last three seasons. Julia Gorka' 19 was honored as Trinity's top junior female scholar athlete in 2018 and its top senior female scholar athlete in May of 2019.
Barney led Nova Southeastern to fifth place in the 2015 NCAA Regatta and sixth place the following spring, and also guided the Sharks to a silver medal in the collegiate fours race at the 2015 Head of the Charles Regatta. She led Bucknell's lightweight-eight crew to third place in the 2014 Intercollegiate Rowing Association (IRA) Championships and its varsity four won the 2013 Patriot League title and silver medals in both the Dad Vail Regatta and the Knecht Cup under her watch. During Barney's four-year stint at Georgetown from 2007 to 2011, that program rose from seventh place to second in the Big East Conference standings and her crews won a gold medal in the 2009 Eastern Sprints (novice 4) and a bronze in the 2011 Big East Championships (2nd varsity eight). Barney also helped Williams College win numerous New England Rowing Championship and NIRC medals and consecutive NCAA Division III Championships in 2005-06 and 2006-07.
Barney graduated with honors and Phi Beta Kappa from Williams in 2001 with a bachelor's degree in economics and history, and added a master's degree in coaching and athletic administration from Concordia University in California in 2014. She was a highly-decorated oarswomen for the Ephs, serving as captain and rowing the bow seat for the fastest boat in Division III rowing in her senior spring. Barney trained and raced with the Potomac Boat Club from 2001 to 2006, and assisted with coaching that organization's Elite Sculling program in 2011-12. She holds a USRowing Level 3 certification and attended the NCAA Women Coaches Academy in 2006.