Sada Jacobson

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Sada Jacobson
Born (1983-02-14) February 14, 1983 (age 36)
Rochester, Minnesota, United States
Height5 ft 7 in (170 cm)[1]
ClubNellya Fencers
Head coach(es)Arkady Burdan[1]
FIE rankingrankings (archive)

Sada Molly Jacobson[2] (born February 14, 1983) is an American Olympic fencer. She is the 2008 Olympic Individual Sabre silver medalist in women's saber (one of three Olympic medals), the 2004 Olympic Individual Sabre bronze medalist in women's saber, and the 2003 Pan American Games champion in women's saber. In 2016, she was inducted into the United States Fencing Hall of Fame.


Jacobson was born in Rochester, Minnesota, and is Jewish.[3][4][5] Her parents are David Jacobson, a member of the 1974 U.S. National fencing team in saber who was an All-American fencer at Yale University and now an endocrinologist, and Tina Jacobson, who also fenced competitively.[6][7][8] She is the sister of fellow U.S. Olympic team fencer and Junior World Champion Emily Jacobson, and fencer Jackie Jacobson.[9]

Jacobson swam competitively for two years in high school.[10] She postponed her college career to train full-time for the 2004 Summer Olympics.

Her hometown is Dunwoody, Georgia, and she has lived in Atlanta, Georgia.[11][12] She graduated from The Westminster Schools in Atlanta, Georgia, in 2000. She graduated with a history degree from Morse College, Yale University. She studied history at Yale University.[13]

Fencing career[edit]

She trained at Nellya Fencers from a young age.[14] She has been coached by Arkady Burdan of Nellya Fencers, and Henry Hartunian at Yale.[14][6]

College & Under-19 career[edit]

Jacobson was a 2-time NCAA sabre champion for Yale University (2001 and 2002).[15][3] She won an NCAA Championship and earned 1st-team All-America honors as a freshman at Yale, after a 30–0 regular season. Jacobson was 29–1 as a sophomore, and repeated as NCAA champion. In addition, she was the 2001 Under-19 National Champion. In 2003, she won the World Junior Fencing Championships in women's epee.[3]

Senior World Championships[edit]

Jacobson is a 4-time Senior World Championships team member (2000–03). She was a member of the gold-medal 2000 Women's Sabre World Championship team at the age of 17.[16] She won another bronze medal at the 2006 World Fencing Championships sabre competition.[16]

In her first individual World Championships in 2001, Jacobson placed 12th. She placed 5th in 2002 and 2003.[17]

Pan American Games[edit]

Jacobson won the gold medal in sabre at the 2003 Pan American Games.[18][16]

National Championships[edit]

Jacobson won the US women's sabre championship in 2004 (beating her sister in the final) and 2006.[19][3]

She was ranked # 1 in the US from June 2003 through October 2005.[3]

Number 1 World Ranking[edit]

In 2004, at 19 years of age she became the first U.S. woman to be ranked No. 1 in the world in sabre, and only the second U.S. athlete to claim the title, after male fencer Keeth Smart.[10][20][21][22]

Olympic medals[edit]

Jacobson won the bronze medal in women's sabre at the 2004 Summer Olympics, the first year that event was hosted at the Olympics.[23] Her match took place before the gold-silver match, and therefore Jacobsen became the first women's sabre Olympic medalist.[24][25] She won the silver medal in individual sabre [23]and bronze in the team sabre event at the 2008 Summer Olympics.[26]

Post-fencing career[edit]

Jacobson indicated that she intended to retire from competitive fencing after the 2008 Olympic competitions concluded, and focus on law school, and starting life with her fiance.[27] She graduated with a law degree from the University of Michigan Law School in 2011.[28][29][29][5] She and Brendan Brunelle Bâby, who graduated from Pennsylvania State University where he competed in épée and was a member of three NCAA championship teams, were married in May 2009 in Atlanta at the Nellya Fencers Club, where she had trained for both the 2004 and 2008 Summer Olympics.[7] As of 2015, she practiced commercial litigation for McKenna Long & Aldridge.[5]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Sada Jacobson". USA Fencing. Retrieved 15 April 2017.
  2. ^ "Sada Jacobson, Brendan Bâby". The New York Times. May 17, 2009. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  3. ^ a b c d e Day by Day in Jewish Sports History - Bob Wechsler
  4. ^ The Shengold Jewish Encyclopedia
  5. ^ a b c "Sada Jacobson" | Jewish Women's Archive
  6. ^ a b Ivy Women in Sports
  7. ^ a b "Sada Jacobson, Brendan Bâby". The New York Times. May 17, 2009. Retrieved May 23, 2010.
  8. ^ Judy Fortin (December 15, 2008). "Olympic fencer inspires new generation". CNN. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  9. ^ "Sada Jacobson | Athletes | US Fencing". Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  10. ^ a b [1] Archived December 30, 2006, at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ Sada Jacobson, Brendan Bâby - The New York Times
  12. ^ The New Yorker
  13. ^ "Fencer Jacobson '06 takes silver in Beijing". Yale Daily News. August 10, 2008. Archived from the original on August 22, 2008. Retrieved August 22, 2008.
  14. ^ a b Playing in Time: Essays, Profiles, and Other True Stories - Carlo Rotella
  15. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2002-02-23. Retrieved 2011-01-03.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)][[permanent dead link]
  16. ^ a b c d e "Sada Jacobson"
  17. ^ "Sada Jacobson"
  18. ^ Ralph Hickok (February 18, 2009). "Pan American Games Fencing Medalists". Archived from the original on September 6, 2012. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  19. ^ Ralph Hickok (February 18, 2009). "U. S. Fencing Champions". Archived from the original on December 10, 2006. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  20. ^ [2] Archived May 9, 2005, at the Wayback Machine
  21. ^
  22. ^ Olympic Women and the Media: International Perspectives
  23. ^ a b "Nellya's Olympic Fencers". 2016-03-04. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved 2018-08-14.
  24. ^ "Ivy Women in Sports". Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  25. ^ "Athens 2004 Olympics, Fencing – Fencing Results". Yahoo! Sports. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  26. ^ "Former Olympic fencer Sada Jacobson transitions to life as a Michigan law student". May 12, 2010. Retrieved January 3, 2011.
  27. ^ "Fencing: The new baseball? – TODAY in Beijing". MSNBC. August 13, 2008. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  28. ^ Sheinin, Dave (August 10, 2008). "In Fencing, U.S. Women Pull Off Historic Sweep". Washington Post. Retrieved August 22, 2008.
  29. ^ a b Slater, Dan (August 11, 2008). "Upon Returning from Beijing, Fencing Champ Will Be Law School Bound". WSJ. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  30. ^ "Jewish Sports Hall of Fame". March 24, 2002. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  31. ^ Journal of the Senate
  32. ^ "Yale Academic All-Ivy Selections" - Ivy League
  33. ^ "Jewish Heroes in America". Archived from the original on 2010-05-28. Retrieved March 27, 2010.
  34. ^ "USA Fencing Members Elect Hall of Fame Class of 2016"

External links[edit]