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Baldwin Wallace names Steve Thompson as director of athletics

Photo of Steve ThompsonBaldwin Wallace University has named Steve Thompson as the University's Director of Athletics following a national search. Thompson will begin leading the Yellow Jackets on June 7.

"We are thrilled to welcome Steve to the BW Athletics Department and to our BW community," said President Bob Helmer. "Steve comes to BW with an extensive knowledge of the NCAA Division III philosophy not only as an administrator but as a former student-athlete. We look forward to him enhancing our student-athlete experience as well as continuing to improve the athletic department and facilities as we seek excellence in all ways."

Thompson succeeds interim director of athletics John Snell '87, who will return to his assistant director of athletics role after running the department for the 2020-21 academic year following the retirement of Kris Diaz '78 last June.

"Having grown up in Northeast Ohio, Baldwin Wallace has always been a premier Division III institution producing excellent outcomes in competition and in the classroom," Thompson said. "I look forward to working with the entire BW family, especially our scholar-athletes, in creating a transformational Yellow Jacket experience."

The Thompson File

Photo of Steve ThompsonThompson comes to Berea after serving the past three years as the director of athletics at Bethany College in West Virginia. At Bethany, he led the daily operations of the Bisons' 21 intercollegiate athletic sports teams, created a new alumni engagement strategy, signed an agreement with BSN Sports and Nike to be the exclusive apparel provider and renewed a partnership with Riddell Corporation.

Prior to Bethany, Thompson was the director of athletics at Eureka College in Illinois for four years and was the women's basketball head coach for three years. As athletics director, he made a series of upgrades and renovations to Eureka facilities, including the Christine Bonati Bollwinkle Arena and Convocation Center, which was dedicated in October 2015, and the addition of turf and lights to Peter FioRito Stadium at McKinzie Field in the summer of 2017. 

As a coach, Thompson led his team to a 2017 St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Championship, a berth into the NCAA Tournament and earned the SLIAC Coach of the Year Award.

Before Eureka, he served two years as assistant athletic director for facilities and operations at Kent State University, where he directed the day-to-day operations of several athletic facilities, including the 25,000-seat Dix Stadium, home of the Golden Flash football team. Thompson also contributed to long-term strategic planning and coordinated the game-day experience for Kent State football. His role in student involvement and alumni relations helped increase attendance to more than 85,000 fans for the 2013 season.

From 2007 through 2012, Thompson was assistant athletic director for facilities and operations at Case Western Reserve University.

Thompson's Background

Thompson earned a Bachelor of Arts in history from The College of Wooster in 2001 and a Master of Science in sports administration from Kent State in 2007. While at Wooster, he was a three-year letterwinner and a team captain in men's basketball. The Fighting Scots won two North Coast Athletic Conference regular season titles, three NCAC Tournament championships and secured three NCAA Division III Tournament bids.

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