By Christie Melhorn, May 26 2017 —
Dinos athletic director Christine Stapleton was announced as Western University’s director of sports and recreation services on May 15. Stapleton has been with the Dinos since October 2015.
During Stapleton’s term, the Dinos excelled in various sports. In 2016, the men’s basketball team nearly claimed a national title and the men’s football team won the Hardy Cup and Mitchell Bowl. 2017 saw the women’s track team win the Golden Bear Open and the rowing team conquer the Alberta Indoor Rowing Championships. Stapleton said her brief time with the Dinos was enriching.
“We focus on the student population here at the U of C. A key principle in decision making was keeping the student experience top of mind,” Stapleton said. “A key value was collaboration and accountability and that in the work that we did, whether it be budgets or partnerships, that we were accountable to our students and partners.”
Stapleton said that a strong sense of accountability and transparency is valuable at all levels of university athletics.
“I was transparent and got the information I would need,” she said. “I think that helps and fosters accountability. When people go, ‘Well, these are decisions being made. These are the reasons why. Now we have to go in and do good work’ – I think I brought that in the short time I was here.”
Stapleton described traveling with athletes, watching competitions and getting to know students personally as some of her most rewarding moments with the Dinos.
“Time is always a challenge,” Stapleton said. “But I think that there’s that level of, ‘I see you and I’m doing work for you and you’re doing work for us.’”
Stapleton is currently working on future projects for her successor to take on.
“In a month or so there will be a clearer picture,” she said. “Right now we are working as hard as we can to ensure that the student experience isn’t impacted.”
Stapleton will take over as director of sports and recreation services at Western University on July 3.