Oct. 17, 2007
IOWA CITY – Christine Grant, former women’s athletics director at the University of Iowa and a long-time advocate of gender equity in women’s sports, has been named one of the most 100 influential sports educators in America by the Institute of International Sport.
The list honors those who had a profound impact on the sports experience of great athletes but who receive little public recognition.
“In America and in many other countries, we honor elite athletes, winning coaches, wealthy team owners and media moguls,” said Dan Doyle, executive director of the Institute. “We praise sports educators yet we really do not honor them in a manner befitting their admirable impact on society. This project is aimed at honoring individuals and organizations who have creatively and effectively used sport in the very best way: as a means to educate and shape positive values.”
Grant is emeritus associate professor of sports administration at the UI and was women’s athletic director from 1973 to 2000. As athletic director, Grant was a vocal public advocate for gender equity in intercollegiate athletics and championed Title IX nationwide. Grant has testified on Title IX and gender equity before the U.S. House of Representatives subcommittees on Postsecondary Education and Commerce, Consumer Protection and Competitiveness, and she has been an expert witness in many legal actions brought under Title IX.
In addition, Grant has served as an expert consultant to the Health, Education and Welfare Office for Civil Rights Title IX Task Force.
Grant is a recipient of the Billie Jean King Award and the NCAA Honda Award of Merit for outstanding achievements in women’s athletics, and she is a founding member and former president of the Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women. She has been president of the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators and has been inducted into the Hall of Fame of the National Association for Girls and Women in Sport.
“People around the country are now finding out what we Iowans have known for a long time; Dr. Christine Grant was a wonderful teacher, coach, athletic administrator and proponent of women’s athletics. There’s no question the status of women, in today’s athletic world, is in large part due to the ideals and efforts championed by Dr. Christine Grant.”
UI Director of Athletics Gary Barta
“On behalf of the entire University of Iowa family, I’d like to congratulate Dr. Grant on this wonderful honor,” said Gary Barta, UI athletic director. “People around the country are now finding out what we Iowans have known for a long time; Dr. Christine Grant was a wonderful teacher, coach, athletic administrator and proponent of women’s athletics. There’s no question the status of women, in today’s athletic world, is in large part due to the ideals and efforts championed by Dr. Christine Grant.”
Also included in the list is C. Vivian Stringer, the current Rutgers University women’s basketball coach who coached the UI women’s basketball team from 1983 to 1995. As UI coach, Stringer won six Big Ten titles and earned nine NCAA tournament invitations, including the Hawkeyes’ only Final Four berth in 1993. She won two NCAA National Coach of the Year awards leading the Hawkeyes.
“C. Vivian Stringer exhibited all the traits of a great coach, teacher and person during her tenure as the University of Iowa women’s basketball coach,” said Barta. “The honor of being named one of the nation’s most influential sports educators fit Dr. Grant and Coach Stringer perfectly.”
UI President Sally Mason said, “It’s safe to say that without people like Dr. Grant and Coach Stringer, women’s sports would not be where they are today in the United States. This honor is well deserved for these two outstanding women who have worked so hard and so long to elevate the role of women’s sports and who have made the Hawkeye women’s program so successful.”
The Institute received more than 1,500 nominees for the list, which was selected by a committee made up of coaches, athletic administrators, journalists and academics. More information about list is available online at http://www.internationalsports.com.