Wright State Director of Athletics Bob Grant to retire

Bob Grant has served as director of athletics at Wright State since 2008.

Bob Grant, director of athletics at Wright State University, will retire after more than 30 years of dedicated service to Wright State and its Athletic Department, effective March 31.

“Bob leaves a legacy marked by extraordinary success and an unwavering commitment to our student-athletes,” said Wright State University President Sue Edwards, Ph.D.

Joylynn Brown, deputy director of athletics, will serve as the interim director of athletics.

“Joylynn brings a wealth of experience to the role and a steadfast passion for the success of Wright State Athletics and its student-athletes,” Edwards said.

Named the director of athletics in 2008, Grant introduced a vision that revolutionized the Athletic Department’s culture and trajectory.

By embracing the mission statement “PSA: People, Student, Athlete,” Wright State Athletics has prioritized student-athletes’ holistic development. This student-centered approach led to remarkable growth and achievement, setting the stage for successful fundraising, state-of-the-art facility construction and the recruitment of top-tier coaching talent.

Throughout Grant’s tenure, Wright State Athletics achieved success across all sports, culminating in numerous milestones. Highlights include the Raiders’ first-ever Horizon League All Sports Award in 2019 and landmark NCAA victories in men’s soccer, volleyball, women’s basketball, and men’s basketball. Notably, the volleyball program secured the university’s first at-large NCAA tournament bid in 2019.

Under Grant’s leadership, Wright State’s athletic programs experienced numerous notable achievements, including:

  • 15 combined NCAA tournament appearances since 2018 after only 12 in the previous 31 years of Division I play.
  • Best overall (61%) and conference (67%) team winning percentages in the Horizon League from 2018 to 2023.
  • The men’s basketball team’s historic NCAA tournament victory in 2022
  • The baseball program’s emergence as one of Ohio’s best collegiate programs, boasting multiple NCAA tournament appearances.
  • The men’s golf program’s breakthrough NCAA tournament appearances and individual accolades.
  • The women’s basketball team’s first NCAA Tournament win in 2021, alongside consistent postseason appearances.
  • Men’s soccer’s national top-25 ranking and debut NCAA tournament berth in 2019.
  • Volleyball secured the first NCAA at-large selection in Wright State athletics history in 2019. The Raiders also returned to the NCAA Championship in 2023 for the fourth time in five seasons.

Beyond athletic achievements, Grant championed academic excellence among student-athletes, who have maintained a remarkable four-year average graduate success rate of 91%.

A Wright State alum, Grant’s journey from undergraduate student to director of athletics epitomizes dedication and service. His leadership roles in the NCAA and in community engagement, such as serving on the board of the YMCA of Greater Dayton and his recognition as an 88th Air Base Wing honorary commander, reflect his commitment to holistic impact.

About Joylynn Brown

Joylynn Brown has been named the interim director of athletics at Wright State.

Joylynn Brown has been a part of Wright State’s athletic administration since 2014. She represents the university as the designated senior woman administrator in conference and NCAA matters and is the deputy Title IX coordinator for Athletics.

In addition, she serves as Wright State Athletics diversity and inclusion designee and oversees programming for staff and student-athletes on diversity, equity and inclusion.

She provides oversight of the Student-Athlete Advisory Council and the NCAA Life Skills program and serves as the department liaison with Human Resources.

Brown played volleyball for the Raiders from 1989 to 1992. She then served as an assistant coach and head coach from 1998 to 2005 of the volleyball program. She was named the Horizon League Coach of the Year and the AVCA Midwest Region Coach of the Year in 2001.

Brown graduated from Wright State in 1993 with a bachelor’s degree in communications studies with a concentration in English.

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