Olivet Tiger leaders receive special honors

Gary Newsome, director of athletics, and Wendy Reid, sports information director, are at the top once again.

August 20, 2018 Uncategorized

Olivet Tigers_Wendy Reid and Gary Newsome_CCAC honors_sports_Web.jpgOlivet Nazarene University knows Gary Newsome and Wendy Reid are the best. When the Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference (CCAC) agrees, that’s even better! 

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Gary Newsome ’74, director of athletics, is the 2018 CCAC Athletics Director of the Year — his third time to receive this award. 

In his leadership role with the Olivet Tiger athletics program, Gary currently manages 55 employees and a $3.5 million budget. Since he became athletic director in 2008, Olivet’s program has grown by seven sports — three varsity and four junior varsity. The number of Tiger athletes has increased by more than 60 percent to more than 600 student-athletes. In 2016, the University claimed its first national championship — the NAIA title for men’s swimming and diving. 

For the 2017–2018 season, the Tigers made 11 appearances in NAIA national tournaments. The indoor track and field program finished in the top 15. The women’s swimming and diving team finished as national runner-up, and the men’s team finished in third place. CCAC championship teams were women’s soccer, women’s golf, men’s and women’s outdoor track and field and men’s indoor track and field. 

For the 2017–2018 academic year, Tiger athletes maintained an overall 3.29 GPA with 76 NAIA scholar-athletes achieving a 3.5 or higher GPA, while a total of 180 student-athletes were honored with all-academic honors in the CCAC and the MSFA. Nineteen teams also received the NAIA Academic Team award, averaging a 3.0 or higher GPA. 

Besides fostering program growth during his tenure, Gary sets the tone for student-athletes’ character and faith development. This multi-faceted leadership earns him prestigious recognition from the college athletics community. To underscore the strength of his leadership, Olivet has captured nine of the 10 CCAC All-Sports Cup honors

In 2015, Gary was named NAIA Athletic Director of the Year and also collected an Under Armour Athletic Director of the Year award. In 2018, he will be inducted into the ONU Hall of Fame.

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Wendy Reid, sports information director, is the 2018 CCAC Sports Information Director of the Year — her second consecutive year to receive this award and making her the first two-time recipient. 

Beginning her seventh season overseeing the communications of the Olivet Tigers’ 20 athletic teams, she was selected for this honor by a vote of her peers.

Under her leadership, Olivet Tiger athletics has the largest social media following in the CCAC. A fully responsive ONUTigers.com website redesign launch has already resulted in more than 1 million website view and more than 150,000 unique visitors. She is the creator and producer of “A Fly on the Wall with Pat Ullrich” show on YouTube, introduced in 2017. She served as coordinator of the 2018 CCAC Mascot Challenge social media competition.

Her photos and recaps for the Tiger men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams have been featured by CollegeSwimming.com. She was featured by CoSIDA during “Thank Your SID” week in a member profile article and appeared on an episode of SIDCast. She serves on the CoSIDA and NAIA-SIDA Planning Committees and on the Continuing Education Committee at the NAIA level. 

On campus, Wendy coordinates game day activities for 20 of the Tiger intercollegiate sports, training and supervising an army of student workers and volunteers. 

Congratulations, Wendy and Gary! You continue to show us why it’s great to be a Tiger.

To learn more about the Olivet Tiger athletics program, contact the Office of Admissions at admissions@olivet.edu or 800-648-1463.

Published: 8/20/2018

Student on main campus wearing pink sweater and holding water bottle.

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