Otterbein University Hires First Female Athletic Director


Dawn Stewart stood at the edge of playing field and watched two members of Otterbein University's lacrosse team toss the ball around, 10TV’s Andrea Cambern reported Monday.

The athletes may not have realized it, but the woman standing there watching them was their new boss.

Stewart, 35, Otterbein University’s new athletic director, is the first female to hold the position in school history.

"I don't like to sit behind a desk all day,” Stewart said. “I certainly like to get to know the student athletes.”

Stewart, an Otterbein alumna, was on the tennis team during her time on campus.

Since graduating in 1998, Stewart has worked in sports jobs for Divisions I and III programs at universities, most recently at Capital University in Bexley.  

Stewart will oversee 20 sports at Otterbein. One of her first jobs will be to help pick the new men's basketball coach.

"(This job is) so much about creating this great experience for student athletes,” Stewart said. “It's about surrounding them with the right people.”

Stewart said that she planned to be a big supporter of all the campus athletes, regardless of their sport.

"I want them to understand that, along with their coaches, I'm a member of their team.  That I'm part of their support system here. That I'm fighting for their success just as much as they are," Stewart said.

She was chosen after a nationwide search of one hundred candidates.

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