Holly McPeak is an ambassador on the beach volleyball scene, helping usher the sport into the Olympic Games and being a strong players’ voice in retirement.
Holly competed in three Olympic Games, including the 1996 Atlanta Games as the first year with beach volleyball as a medal sport. She recorded her second consecutive fifth-place finish at the 2000 Sydney Games, then reached the podium with a bronze finish with Elaine Youngs at the 2004 Athens Games.
Overall, Holly holds 72 career beach titles, including 19 FIVB titles, two FIVB Grand Slam event titles and 53 domestic titles in the USA. She won titles with seven different partners. In 2002, she became the first woman worldwide to surpass $1 million in career earnings and finished with $1.6 million overall.
Holly participated in her first beach tournament in the Women’s Professional Volleyball Association Miller Lite Open at Santa Monica in 1987. During this time, she was still invested in the indoor game competing for UCLA. Holly led the Bruins to the NCAA championship in 1990 and earned All-Pac 10 first-team honors after breaking the single season assist record. After college, she was named the WPVA’s Rookie of the Year in 1991 and won her first beach title at the AVP Open in 1993 – the first of her 11 titles in 1993.
Holly won the prestigious AVP Manhattan Beach Open in 2004, marking her 68th career beach title to set a new standard in total titles won that has since been eclipsed. She currently ranks third all-time in tournament titles among females.
Holly was named MVP in three different USA beach tours and five total MVP honors. She was named Best Defensive Player of the Year eight times. Holly also earned the AVP’s Outstanding Achievement Award in 2004.
Holly was inducted into the International Volleyball Hall of Fame in 2009.