Rawak becomes UD’s first full-time female athletic director

New UD athletic director Christine Rawak apeaks after being introduced on Friday afternoon. “I am truly honored and humbled for the opportunity to join the Delaware family,” Rawak said in a press release, “and I am grateful for the trust that President (Dennis) Assanis has in me and in my abilities to lead this department. The university is a world-class institution with a community with a clear passion and pride for athletics and for the state of Delaware. My family and I cannot wait to become Blue Hens.” (UD sports information)

New UD athletic director Christine Rawak apeaks after being introduced on Friday afternoon. “I am truly honored and humbled for the opportunity to join the Delaware family,” Rawak said in a press release, “and I am grateful for the trust that President (Dennis) Assanis has in me and in my abilities to lead this department. The university is a world-class institution with a community with a clear passion and pride for athletics and for the state of Delaware. My family and I cannot wait to become Blue Hens.” (UD sports information)

NEWARK — The University of Delaware announced on Friday that Christine Rawak will be its new athletic director.

Rawak is currently the executive senior associate athletic director at the University of Michigan.

The first full-time female AD in the school’s history, Rawak is scheduled to start at UD on June 5.

Christine Rawak

Christine Rawak

Delaware hasn’t had a full-time athletic director since Eric Ziady left the post in December.

“I am truly honored and humbled for the opportunity to join the Delaware family,” Rawak said in a press release, “and I am grateful for the trust that President (Dennis) Assanis has in me and in my abilities to lead this department. The university is a world-class institution with a community with a clear passion and pride for athletics and for the state of Delaware. My family and I cannot wait to become Blue Hens.”

The extended hiring process has caused UD to delay in hiring a new men’s basketball coach.

The Blue Hens have been without a coach since 10-year coach Monte’ Ross was let go on March 18. Of the 51 NCAA Division I men’s basketball head coaching vacancies nationally, Delaware is the only one not to hire a new coach yet.

A native of Newtown, Pa., Rawak is just the third person to hold the Delaware AD job since the position was established in 1940. But she is the third person to have the job since 2009, joining Bernard Muir — now at Stanford — and Ziady.

The late Dave Nelson, another Michigan grad, was Delaware’s athletic director from 1951 to 1984.

As a student at Michigan, Rawak was a member of the varsity swim team and was student government president before earning her bachelor’s degree in sports management and communications in 1992. After graduation, she joined the athletics department as an assistant swim coach.

Prior to assuming her current position at Michigan, Rawak spent seven years in the school’s Office of University Development as the assistant vice president of talent management and development operations. From 1998-2004, she worked as director of personnel and business resources in the Office of Alumni Relations and Development at Northwestern University while earning a master’s degree in communication from Northwestern.

“Chrissi has trained her whole life for this athletic director role,” said Jim Hackett, former interim AD at Michigan. “From being a student athlete to coach to raising money for the largest fundraising campaign in Michigan athletics’ history, to designing and building a brand and communications organization.  Delaware is getting one of the Big Ten’s most talented individuals for this role.”

Parker Executive Search helped Delaware conduct its search.

Matt Robinson served as UD’s interim athletic director since January and was a candidate for the job. He will return to his position as professor and director of the Sport Management Program in UD’s Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics.

Delaware field hockey player Meghan Winesett was a member of the search committee.

“I am beyond ecstatic to have Chrissi Rawak as the new leader of our athletic department,” she said in a press release. “I believe she embodies the characteristics we need in a leader to be successful and competitive, while also committing to enhancing the student-athlete experience. She’s an absolute rockstar and we are lucky to have her!”

“I am thrilled to welcome Chrissi, (her husband) Glenn and their family to the University of Delaware community,” said football coach Dave Brock, another committee member. “I was thoroughly impressed with her vision for Delaware Athletics. Chrissi encompasses everything that Delaware Athletics needs as we move into the future. I look forward to working with her and Dr. Assanis.”

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