March 9, 2018

NAC Spotlight: Kate Roy, Lyndon

Lyndon’s Kate Roy wears a lot of “hats” in the athletic department as she currently serves as the Associate Director of Athletics, Compliance Coordinator and Senior Woman Administrator. She is responsible for a lot of the behind the scenes work and brings out the very best in others on campus. According to Lyndon AD, Chris Ummer, “Kate is a tireless worker and the ultimate athletic administrator for student-athlete experience and success. Kate makes everyone around her better at what they do.” 

Her Background: Prior to her time at Lyndon, Kate started the swimming program at the University of New England. She tallied a winning record in nine of her 10 seasons as the Nor'easters leader and recorded an impressive 80-31 career mark. She was named Coach of the Year in 2006 during the New England Championship and has seen former athletes earn UNE Hall of Fame recognition.

In addition to her coaching responsibilities at UNE, she performed a number of athletic department administrative duties and served the university as an instructor for the Sport Management program.

She has worked very hard to get to where she is today, having recently been elected to the Vice Chair position of the NCAA Division III Management Council.

At January's NCAA Convention Kate was featured on the College Sports Insider with Jack Ford podcast. On the podcast she spoke at length on her experiences and the role of a Senior Woman Administrator.  The podcast can be found HERE.

Learn more about Kate:

Where did you attend college? What was your major?
“I earned my bachelor’s degree in English with a minor in Communications from Virginia Tech. Ten years later, I earned my master’s degree in Sport and Recreation Management with a concentration in Coaching from New England College.”

Were you an athlete in college? If so, what sport/s?
“I played on the club water polo team as a freshman and most of my sophomore year before tearing my ACL for the second time (playing intramural flag football, of all things).”

What was your first job out of college?
“I had been a swimmer growing up and through high school, and it was hard to stay away from the pool after my injury. I got a job as a lifeguard at the Blacksburg Aquatic Center after my knee healed, and that led to my first real coaching job. I started as a volunteer assistant with the Blacksburg Sunfish, and was hired as the head coach during my senior year. It is a USA Swimming team of more than 200 youth swimmers. It was sometimes tough to balance early morning and multiple afternoon practices with my studies, but I loved it so much that it was easy to sacrifice some social life! I stayed in that position for a short while after graduating, then moved on to coach another USA Swimming program, the Snappers Swim Team in Great Barrington, Massachusetts.”

What was the highlight of your 10-year coaching career at UNE?
“Wow, this one is really hard to answer. I have so many fond memories from my time at UNE, and most of them surround my student-athletes. I took great pleasure in their successes - academically, athletically, and personally. Every record set, championship won, personal best time, Dean’s List, research project, or amazing internship was a celebration. One of my first recruits, Lizzie Wareham, was in the 2017 Hall of Fame Class at UNE - definitely a highlight. What I remember most fondly are the people. I worked with amazing student-athletes and colleagues who made me want to work hard for them every day. I also look back and cherish all the times when things went wrong - the crazy bus trips, the ice storm that trapped us in Florida (and then Baltimore, and then Boston, and then Portland…), the defeats - all taught me something and helped me grow as a professional.”

What made you want to change your path from coaching to just administration?
“My focus, my motivation, has always been to give student-athletes the best possible overall college experience. As I progressed as a coach, I realized I wanted to be in a position to help more student-athletes than just one team, and I could do that by leading a team of coaches.”

What excites you most about your work?
“Student-athletes! It is an incredible privilege to work in college athletics, and to have an impact on so many people - people who are going to go out and change the world in so many different and amazing ways. I love watching (and guiding and supporting) student-athletes as they grow and develop from brand new freshmen to college graduates. The transformation is incredible!”

What is the DIII Management Council? What were your responsibilities as a member? What will you be responsible for now servings as the Vice Chair of Management Council?
To quote the Division III website: “The Management Council reports directly to the Presidents Council and handles the implementation of policies adopted by the Association’s Board of Governors and Division III Presidents Council.  The Management Council may sponsor legislative proposals; make interpretations of Division III’s bylaws; and may also handle resolution of Division III issues and recommendations from other committees and working groups throughout the Division’s substructure.”

“As a membership-driven organization, our service is to the student-athletes, coaches, and administrators on every DIII campus across the country. We work closely with NCAA staff to carry out the work of Division III and serve the membership– strategic initiatives, budget management, legislative work, and other membership needs. All the other committees (sport committees, governance committees, and association wide committees) report out to the Management Council and we make decisions based on their recommendations.

Each member of management council also serves on a variety of governance committees. I currently serve on the Administrative Committee, the Strategic Planning and Finance Committee, the Subcommittee for Legislative Relief, and the Infractions Appeals Committee. As Vice Chair, I will assist the chair and NCAA staff in running meetings and setting priorities for the association, and serve ex officio on the President’s Council.”

How do you spend your time out of work?
“It will surprise no one who knows me to say I spend as much time as possible with my 3 kitties. I also like to be creative and work with my hands. I paint, craft, build and restore furniture - anything that lets my creative side run wild. I also love spending time with my family & friends, watching sports of all kinds, and being in/on/around the water.”

What is your go to dance song?
“I’m more of a chill music lover, but I always get up for Jackson 5. “A little less conversation” by Elvis is a favorite, too. I guess that shows my age a little bit, but I groove to Maroon 5, Imagine Dragons, Lady Gaga and Selena too!” 

--Spotlight series courtesy of NAC intern Kelsey Bragdon