For close to thirty years Jennifer Kohut has taught and coached at Branford High School. Dedicated to her students and athletes, Jen has taught Physical Education and Health and she has served as the head coach of the girls’ soccer and boys’ golf teams. During her tenure, Jen has earned the respect of her colleagues and she has positively impacted the lives of countless students.
Jen was born as the second of four children to Michael and Jeanette Kohut. Along with her siblings Beth, Amy, and Matthew, Jen grew up in Manchester. At the age of nine, she tried out and was selected to participate in Manchester Little League. A trend setter, Jen became the first female to play in the league and at the conclusion of the season, she was chosen to play on the all-star team.
Jen is one of the most accomplished and versatile athletes in the proud history of Manchester High School Athletics. As an “Indian” she earned multiple letters in field hockey, basketball, and softball. Remarkably, Jen was selected by her peers as a captain of all three teams. Furthermore, she earned All CCC Conference honors as a junior and senior in each sport. Additional accolades included team M.V.P (all three sports) and All State status in field hockey and softball. At the conclusion of her senior year, Jen was named the Female Athlete of the Year at her alma mater.
In the fall of 1984, Jen matriculated to UCONN. While at Storrs, she lettered in field hockey and softball. Jen graduated in the spring of 1988 with a degree in Education Sports and Leisure Studies. While teaching and coaching, Jen earned a Master Degree in Health Education from Southern Connecticut State University. Jen began her teaching career at Holy Cross School in New Britain. After four years, she was hired by the Branford Board of Education to teach Physical Education at Murphy School. In 1997, she transferred to Branford High School. For two seasons, Jen served as an assistant coach for the girls’ soccer team. In 1998, she took over the program. As a head coach, Jen is a tireless worker. On the “pitch,” she is a passionate teacher of the fundamentals, sets ambitious standards, and demands maximum effort at all times. In return, she is loyal to her players and establishes lifelong relationships. Ali Gallipoli Paquette (BHS graduate 2010), the Director of Athletic Communications at Middlebury College, played four seasons for Jen. Ali stated, “Jen is fully committed to the improvement of her players in the class and on the field. Her support goes beyond athletics. To her current and past players, she is a mother figure, and a motivator. Jen has had a profound impact on so many people.”
In total, Jen’s soccer teams have captured six divisional titles. In 2012, the Hornets won the prestigious SCC Conference Championship. In 2013, Branford were the SCC and State Class finalists. As a result of her unprecedented success, Jen has been named New Haven Register Coach of the Year and SCC Conference Coach of the Year. Jen’s achievements as a head coach extends beyond the fall season. As the head golf coach, her teams have won three divisional championships. Similar to soccer, Jen has been recognized as the New Haven Register and SCC Conference Coach of the Year.
In her private life, Jen married her wife Barbara in 2015. Currently, Barbara is a Reading Specialist in the Newington Public School System. The couple resides in Middletown with their dog Georgia.