June 24, 2004
Providence, Rhode Island - David Roach, who oversaw unprecedented growth in the Brown University Athletic Department during the last 14 years, has stepped down as the Director of Athletics at Brown to accept the Athletic Director position at Colgate University.
"I've been at Brown for 22 of the last 26 years of my life, and my three daughters were born here in Rhode Island," said Roach. "The last 14 years have been a great time in my life and career. I've thoroughly enjoyed working with everyone at Brown, and I'm especially proud of the staff and athletic department we have in place. We have a tremendous coaching staff at Brown, both as professionals and as people. Our coaches have always kept the 'student' first in student-athlete."
Roach has revitalized the Brown athletic program, overseeing the resurgence of its athletic teams while balancing the budget and launching an ambitious marketing, promotional and community involvement campaign. His staff included more than 100 athletic department employees, including coaches of 37 varsity and several club sports teams and nearly 1,000 of the nation's finest student-athletes.
Since becoming the 13th Athletic Director in Brown history in June, 1990, Brown teams have captured 62 Ivy League or Eastern Championships, made 36 NCAA Tournament appearances and won eight National Championships, including Brown's first four NCAA Championships. Brown's men's basketball team earned a berth in the National Invitation Tournament (NIT) in 2003. In 2002, Brown's athletic program was honored by US News and World Report as one of the Top 20 Athletic Programs in the nation. Brown's Athletic Department was also honored in 1999-2000 by the Rhode Island Sports Council as Rhode Island's Outstanding Sports Organization for contributions to, and support of, Rhode Island sports tradition.
Under Roach's leadership, the Brown athletic department has "adopted" the Fox Point Elementary School (now the Vartan Gregorian Elementary School). The first adoption ceremony took place in October, 1991 at the Fox Point School bringing together Fox Point's 450 students with Brown University athletes and coaches. Roach created Brown's first Student-Athletic Advisory Board, and implemented a Sports Marketing and Promotions program that includes a new athletic logo and Corporate Sponsorship program.
Roach returned to Brown, where he spent eight years (1978-86) as the women's swim coach, after a successful coaching stint at the University of Tennessee, where his women's swimming teams won 85 percent of their meets in his four years (1986-90). During his tenure at Tennessee, the program improved from 39th to 4th at the NCAA Division I Championship.
In eight years at the helm of the Brown women's swim program, Roach took the Bears into the national spotlight. Inheriting the last place team in the Ivy League prior to his arrival, Roach guided Brown to conference championships in 1983, 1984 and 1985. In 1989, he was inducted into the Brown University Hall of Fame.
A native of Waterbury, Conn., Roach graduated from Springfield College in 1971, and has a Master of Science degree in Physical Education from Springfield (1972). He was a member of the NCAA Championship Competition Cabinet for five years (1997-2002), and is currently the chair of the NCAA Swimming and Diving Committee. He is also on the Executive Committee of the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA). Roach and his wife, Anne, have three daughters, Elizabeth, Michelle and Alexandra.