For the first time since 2007, Virginia Wesleyan athletics has a new face in charge with Tina Hill becoming the University’s new Executive Director of Athletics. Hill is no stranger to the Old Dominion Athletic Conference or Virginia as she comes to Virginia Beach after being the Athletic Director at Randolph College, located in Lynchburg, Virginia.
“This was an opportunity to be apart of something that I have always admired from afar, and an opportunity to trade the mountains for the beach, it’s been a win-win for me so far,” said Hill.
Although the beach is an attractive part of Virginia Wesleyan, Hill recognizes that there is work to be done and it is an exciting time to be apart of the Marlin Community.
Hill is an Iowa native and has been to both coasts of the country in her career. Hill’s first job in athletics came at Elizabethtown College as an intern, and she left seven years later as their interim Athletic Director. From Elizabethtown, Hill traveled to Cal Lutheran, where she was the Associate Athletic Director before coming the first full time Athletic Director at Cornell College in Iowa. All of this experience, along with her ten years at Randolph, is what Hill will lean on as she begins her tenure at Virginia Wesleyan.
Hill is no stranger to change on college campuses, as she was apart of Randolph’s transition to a co-ed school along with multiple facility projects at California Lutheran, where she planned blueprints for 200 acres of land dedicated for athletics.
Change is something that does not scare away Hill, but rather excites her and she is looking forward to building off of the work President Miller has already started. “I have always held Virginia Wesleyan in high regard from an athletics perspective, but it has been really impressive to see the progression on campus that was occurred under Dr. Miller’s leadership,” Hill said.
The progression will continue within athletics, but first must come the assessing and planning process, and making sure everyone is on board. “Here it is a matter of where we are institutionally, it’s not just about new buildings or new facilities, but we have a tremendous staff with years of experience that is great to tap into and as a staff we are discovering together where we are and where we want to go and how do we do that,” Hill explained.
Students also share the excitement for progression and look forward to seeing where Tina Hill will lead the Marlin athletic programs. “I’m definitely excited to see the direction the athletic program goes in, especially as I will be graduating this spring, it will be interesting to come back to campus as an alumni to see the progressions,” senior Daniel Petro said.
Although Tina Hill is the Executive Director of Athletics, the overall experience for student-athletes is one of her top priorities. “We are always focused on the quality experience that our students have, it is not just about what they are doing for their team, but what are student-athletes doing around the campus to contribute to the culture outside of their athleticism,” Hill said.
Sports Information Director Sam Carges, who joined the Marlin community in Dec. 2017, is looking forward to the possibilities under the direction of Hill. “It is always an exciting time when new leadership takes over, my time with Coach Renn was great as she gave me my first full time position within the industry, but I’m looking forward to continuing to build the brand of Marlin athletics with Tina,” Carges said.
Even though there are a lot of surrounding factors of being a new athletic director, in the end, Hill’s ultimate goal is to win, as a former dual sport student-athlete, it is in her blood. “Collective goal is to lead the league (ODAC), which is nationally recognized, but as a department we went to continue to climb the ladder with both our men’s and women’s programs to be competitive across the board,” Hill said.
“My approach is that I am bringing my four prior institutions with me, along with my national experience, being chair of the volleyball committee, along with being on the NCAA Division III Financial aid and bringing all that experience here and trying to figure out what will serve us best,” said Hill.
Hill is a fixture at Marlin athletic events and for those who are unsure of how to approach her, just bring up her dog, Sadie, and a conversation will spark instantly.