WILMINGTON, N.C. – This year, the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletics Administrators (NACWAA) will honor Kay Yow (posthumously) of NC State University as its 2009 NACWAA Award of Distinction recipient.(Kay Yow-Gibsonville HS, East Carolina, Elon, N.C. State…..)
â€œKay Yow is a very deserving honoree for the NACWAA Award of Distinction. She exemplified all the great qualities of a professional throughout her career and was an inspiration to players, coaches, and administrators throughout the country. Kay was a role model for so many in athletics; it is with great honor to recognize her accomplishments with the NACWAA Award of Distinction,â€ said Jennifer Alley, Executive Director.
In her 38 years as a head coach at the collegiate-level, Yow was one of only six Division I head womenâ€™s basketball mentors to achieve 700 career victories. Yow guided her squads to 20 NCAA Tournaments, 11 trips to the Sweet 16, and a trip to the Elite Eight and Final Four in 1998. She also collected five ACC Regular Season Championships and four ACC Tournament titles.
Yow was part of an elite group of nine Olympic coaches chosen to lead USA Basketball in the pursuit of an Olympic gold medal in womenâ€™s basketball. She had the distinction of being the first coach to win a gold medal twice in Olympic competition. Her medal tally resulted in three, gold and one, silver as a head coach and four gold medals and one, silver as an assistant coach.
Yow won the inaugural Jimmy V ESPY for Perseverance at the 2007 ESPY Awards. This was especially meaningful to Yow as she worked closely for many years with Jim Valvano, North Carolina State Universityâ€™s head menâ€™s basketball coach from 1980-1989, who passed away of metastatic cancer in 1993.
Yow was named national Coach of the Year eight times by various organizations and is a member of numerous halls of fame, including the Guilford County Sports Hall of Fame, the Elon University Hall of Fame, the North Carolina Softball Hall of Fame, the Womenâ€™s Sports Hall of Fame, the North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame, the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Hall of Fame, the AIA Hall of Faith, the Raleigh Sports Hall of Fame, the Womenâ€™s Basketball Hall of Fame and the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame.
A native of Gibsonville, NC, Yow graduated from East Carolina University with a bachelorâ€™s degree in English.
The NACWAA Award of Distinction, sponsored by Jostens, is presented as special recognition to a male or female who has distinguished him/herself with any or all of the following: unique professional contributions, extraordinary service or professional accomplishments, personal courage. This is an opportunity to honor and recognize a male or female who has served as an inspiration to others or for the unique contributions or special circumstances under which he/she has conducted his/her professional work or career. The 2009 Administrator of the Year, Nell Jackson and Honor Awards Dinner, sponsored by Jostens, will be held on Tuesday, October 13, 2009, beginning at 6:00 PM at the NACWAA National Convention in Denver (Broomfield), CO at the Omni Interlocken Resort & Spa.