Oglethorpe University has chosen Rebecca “Becky” Hall as director of athletics. Hall is currently the assistant athletics director and senior woman administrator at Wittenberg University and will become Oglethorpe’s fourth director of athletics since reassigning to NCAA Division III in 1990.
Becky Hall will replace Jay Gardinerwho has served as director since 2004. Gardiner is now the inaugural commissioner of the new Southern Athletic Association, Oglethorpe’s athletic association beginning in the 2012-2013 season.
“After a national search that yielded exceptional candidates, the committee identified the best match for Oglethorpe,” said Vice President for Campus Life and Dean of Students Michelle Hall. “Becky is truly a great fit, full of energy, ideas and experience that will guide our growing athletic program.”
A 1998 graduate of Urbana University where she was a star softball player, Hall was immediately hired by Wittenberg University as an assistant coach and rapidly made an impact on Tiger athletics. She was promoted to head softball coach in 1999 and, just one season later in 2000, led Wittenberg to their first North Coast Athletic Conference Championship. That season concluded with the Tigers making their first trip to the NCAA Championships and securing the school’s first NCAA Tournament softball victory.
While remaining as head softball coach, Hall took on progressive responsibilities. She served as Wittenberg’s director of intramurals and club sports from 2003-2007 before being promoted to assistant director of athletics and senior woman administrator in July of 2007. In that span, Hall has continued to lead a successful softball program and overseen a 3.5 million dollar budget while also fundraising over $58,000 of supplemental income to the department.
In recent years, Oglethorpe has experienced a surge in growth, having added two new dormitories to the campus with plans to break ground on a state-of-the-art new campus center soon.
“Becky’s addition to our leadership team is a strategic move to continue to elevate our athletic programs, build a winning tradition and develop scholar-athletes who are successful on and off the playing fields,” said Oglethorpe University President Lawrence M. Schall.
In addition to her fundraising success, Hall directly supervised all phases of 10 varsity sports teams while at Wittenberg. An advocate for several non-profit organizations, Hall engaged the Wittenberg student-athletes in a variety of community service efforts including events for Strike Out Cancer and Toys for Tots.
“Our athletic department staff will miss having Becky as a part of our program,” said Garnett Purnell, director of athletics and recreation at Wittenberg. “With fifteen years of service to Wittenberg she has played a key role in staff development, administrative enhancements, student support programs and community service. But most of all we will miss her positive personality and the high energy level she brings to work every day.”
“I’d like to thank President Schall, Dean Hall, and all of the faculty, staff, and student-athlete members of the search committee for this amazing opportunity,” said Hall. “Oglethorpe is a very special community and an excellent environment to continue my professional career. I was drawn to the exceptional staff of coaches and administrators, as well as a talented group of students. Oglethorpe has a wonderful tradition of academic and athletic success, and it is my honor to build upon this foundation of excellence.”