Misty May-Treanor Bio And Facts

Misty May-Treanor

Misty May-Treanor is a professional beach volleyball player, author, and coach. She is best known for her success when partnered with Kerri Walsh Jennings. The two are often regarded as the most successful beach volleyball team in history. May-Treanor has made appearances at four different Olympic Summer Games. She won gold medals at three of those Olympic Games.

Her first Olympic appearance was in the 2000 Summer Games in Sydney. She competed in beach volleyball and tied for fifth with then-partner Holly McPeak. However, after teaming up with Kerri Walsh Jennings in 2001, she went undefeated at the Olympics and won three gold medals each year after.

She retired from professional volleyball after the 2012 Olympic Games when she was 35 years old. Misty wanted to focus more on her family and personal goals. However, she continues to be involved with the sport. She has been coaching college-level volleyball players since 2016.

  • Born: July 30, 1977 (30-07-1977)
  • Education: Long Beach State (‘02) and Concordia University (‘13)
  • Net Worth: $6 Million
  • Occupation: Professional Beach Volleyball Player, Coach
  • Height: 5’9” (1.75 m)
  • Weight: 158 lbs (71.67 kg)
  • Position: Right Side, Defensive Specialist
  • Years Active: 1999-2012 (13 years)
  • Career Wins (Tournament Wins): 112
  • Nicknames: The Turtle
  • Teams: Team USA

Beach Volleyball Career

Misty May-Treanor is considered to be one of the greatest beach volleyball players of all time. She started volleyball when she was eight years old and continued to build her skills. In high school, she led her team to two indoor volleyball championships.

In 1994, a year before graduating high school, she was named the best volleyball player in the US. She played in college at Long Beach State as the setter, and she led her undefeated team to the NCAA Division I Championships in 1998.

She entered the professional beach volleyball circuit in 1999. She originally competed with Holly McPeak; they qualified for the 2000 Olympics and ended up taking fifth.

However, May-Treanor had much more success competing with Kerri Walsh Jennings. The two dominated the sport as they won gold at the next three Olympics and finished first at three FIVB World Championships in a row. They also won 112 matches in a row in 2008. When she retired, she had the most tournament wins of any volleyball player at 112.

Titles and Awards

As one of the most successful beach players in history, it should come as no surprise that Misty May-Treanor won multiple awards and titles throughout her career. In college, she was a three-time AVCA All-American as well as the 1998 Honda Broderick NCAA Athlete of the Year Award Winner. She was later inducted into Long Beach State’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

Misty went on to win Best Defensive Player three times, Best Offensive Player five times, Most Valuable Player four times, Most Valuable Team six times with Walsh Jennings, and the Crocs Cup Champion three times with the AVP Tour.

With the FIVB, she won Best Defensive Player three times, Best Offensive Player three times, Best Setter once, Most Inspirational once, Most Outstanding twice, Tour Champion once, and she was also named the FIVB Spokesperson three times. In addition to all of this, she was inducted into the Volleyball Hall of Fame in 2016 and awarded the USAV All-Time Great Female Beach Player in 2019.

Personal Life

Misty May-Treanor was born into a very athletic family. Her father, Bob May was a part of the US Men’s National Volleyball Team in 1968. Her mom, Barbara May, used to be a nationally ranked tennis player. She has two brothers as well.

After graduating high school, May-Treanor went on to study kinesiology at Long Beach State before graduating in 2002. After retirement, she completed her masters at Concordia University in Coaching and Athletic Administration in 2013.

Misty May-Treanor decided to retire in order to spend more time focusing on her goals, like getting her masters and coaching, as well as her family. She is married to professional baseball player Matt Treanor, and together, they have three children: Malia, Mele, and Mia.

She and her family currently live in Southern California, and she coaches volleyball at Long Beach City College.

Fun Facts

  • While in high school, she played against Kerri Walsh Jennings, who played on a rival high school’s team.
  • Misty competed on Dancing with the Stars and actually had to leave the competition due to an ankle injury during a rehearsal.
  • Her mother passed away before the 2004 Olympics, so Misty spread her ashes on the court after she won gold.
  • Her autobiography, Digging Deep in Volleyball and Life, was published in 2010 and shares details about her whole life and athletic career.
  • Throughout May-Treanor and Walsh Jennings’s 11 years as doubles partners, they won 21 consecutive Olympic matches.
  • In those 21 matches, they only ever lost one set to Austria in 2012.
  • At the 2000 Olympics, Misty talked to Kerri Walsh Jennings's parents and tried convincing Kerri to switch to beach volleyball instead of indoor volleyball.
  • She gave birth to twins Mele and Mia in 2017.
  • She won the NCAA Most Outstanding Player Award after serving 20 aces in a tournament.


Why did Misty May-Treanor retire?

Misty May-Treanor decided she wanted the 2012 Olympics to be the end of her professional volleyball career. She had previously considered taking a break after the 2008 Olympics but decided she wanted another Olympic appearance. After London, she felt in both her mind and body that it was time to retire. She wanted to focus time on her family and other personal goals. It worked since she gave birth to her first daughter in 2014 and received her Masters in 2013.

Has Misty May-Treanor played volleyball since retiring?

Misty has played recreationally, mostly, but she did make waves when she played in a professional APV tournament in 2015. She played at the Kingston Seattle Open in August of 2015. However, she was just playing to help her friend Brittany Hochevar who needed someone to fill in as her doubles partner. They were seeded at number 11 but ended up coming in third after losing to Summer Ross and Lane Carico in the semi-finals.

Why did Misty May-Treanor and Kerri Walsh Jennings work together so well?

Of course, it can be tough to boil it down to one thing, but the two trusted each other, and that helped them stay in sync while on the court. Although they had different styles on the court, this helped complement each other during play. The two were also both very motivated to succeed and loved the sport very much. Of course, it helped that the two are some of the most successful beach volleyball players of all time.

What does Misty May-Treanor coach now?

After retirement, Misty May-Treanor went on to become the head coach at Long Beach City College. She coaches both indoor and beach volleyball. She has enjoyed coaching there since she grew up nearby and wants to help the next generation in her community. Additionally, Misty has enjoyed getting back into the bigger team environment of indoor volleyball. She also likes coaching at a two-year community college level, where she can sometimes see her players move on to four-year college programs.