LEXINGTON, Va. -- In its 258-year history, Washington and Lee University has appointed only six athletic directors. The seventh, announced April 24, will be the first woman to hold the position. Janine Hathorn, who has been assistant director of athletics at W&L since 2002 and women’s lacrosse coach since 1987, will start her new position July 1, 2007.
“It is an honor and a privilege to serve as W&L's new director of athletics,” says Hathorn. “It is a great responsibility to make certain the W&L Physical Education and Athletic Department continues to promote student excellence in the classroom, on the playing fields and in their lives outside of the university.”
The director of athletics is a member of the faculty and reports to the University Provost. Responsibilities include management and coordination of 23 men’s and women’s intercollegiate sports and the department’s program of physical education courses. One quarter of W&L’s 1,750 undergraduates participate in intercollegiate sports.
“Jan Hathorn knows Washington and Lee, and is a strong proponent of the student-athlete model,” said University President Kenneth P. Ruscio (’76). “She will add to the tradition of W&L athletic directors committed to the highest standards of competition and student development.”
Hathorn has directed W&L’s women’s lacrosse program since its inception in 1988. Her skill at developing programs has been demonstrated by W&L’s appearances in the NCAA Division III Tournament in 1993, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006.
W&L’s 2006 team set a school record for wins in a season, posting a 16-4 overall record. She guided the team to its fourth-straight Old Dominion Athletic Conference Championship (eighth overall) and fourth-consecutive NCAA Tournament berth where it advanced to the second round.
Hathorn claims a 274-111 (.712) career record, and her 274 victories are the fifth-highest total in the history of women’s lacrosse. She also entered the 2007 season with the 10th-best winning percentage among active coaches in Division III.
In the women’s first varsity season, Hathorn led the Generals to the semifinals of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference tournament. Since then, W&L has posted 17 winning campaigns in the last 18 years and won ODAC titles in 1992, 1993, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006.
Hathorn was named ODAC Lacrosse Coach of the Year in 1992, 1993, 1998, 2001, 2003, 2004, 2005 and 2006 and has served on the NCAA Lacrosse Committee.
Hathorn enjoyed similar success in women’s soccer, where she served as head coach from 1987-2000. She led W&L to ODAC regular season titles in 1991 and 1998 and a then-school record 12 wins in 1996. She was named the ODAC Soccer Coach of the Year in 1988 and 1996.
"Jan has won out in a very tough competition,” says Provost H. Thomas Williams, who chaired the search committee. “We had over 90 applicants for this position, many of them with great experience in very strong colleges and universities. She will bring to the job her many years of athletic success, as well as profound involvement in campus issues beyond the department of athletics."
Before coming to W&L, Hathorn spent five successful years at Denison University, where she coached the lacrosse team to five conference titles. She was named the North Coast Athletic Conference Women's Lacrosse Coach of the Year in 1987.
Hathorn earned a B.A. in physical education from the State University of New York at Cortland in 1982 and an M.A. in physical education from Ohio State University in 1985. She played lacrosse and basketball at Cortland.
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