Hollins Athletics has promoted Robert Sullivan Jr. from part-time to full-time cross country and track and field coach, starting Feb. 1. He will also be teaching two physical education classes.
“I am thrilled that Coach Sullivan will become full-time,” said Director of Athletics Myra Sims. “He has done outstanding work in his part-time role to lead our cross country program, and to create the brand new indoor and outdoor track and field programs. In fact, it has been amazing to see the progress he has made while serving as a part-time coach. He is a tireless worker and has a great ability to connect with young women and their families on the recruiting trail. His experience as a high school coach, his strong leadership skills, and his diligent approach make him a great fit for Hollins. Our student-athletes will enjoy tremendous benefit from having access to Coach Sullivan on a full-time basis.”
Sullivan joined the Hollins cross country coaching staff in March 2019 and was named head coach in August of that year. He then became the head coach of track and field in November 2019 as Hollins started the first track and field program in its 178-year history.
In Sullivan’s first season as the head cross country coach, most of the runners ran season- or career-best times. In addition, 12 athletes qualified for Hollins’ first ODAC Indoor Track and Field Championship competition. Numerous school records were set throughout the season while both teams maintained a high academic standing averaging a 3.4 GPA in the fall and spring semesters. Ten cross country/track and field athletes were named to the ODAC All-Academic Team and two track and field athletes earned VaSID All-Academic Team honors. The 2020 Hollins women’s indoor track team was one of 209 colleges that earned NCAA DIII All-Academic Teams status with a team GPA average of 3.24.
Sullivan is looking to build on this year’s success in the 2020-21 season with two assistant coaches joining him for track and field. KC Bratton will assist the team as the sprints, jumps, and hurdles coach while Teresa Craghead will coach throwers.
“I feel very honored to work at Hollins full-time helping not only grow the XC/Track and Field program but the opportunity to mentor Hollins student-athletes for life past Hollins,” Sullivan said. “I would like to thank the Hollins administration and Myra Sims for making this opportunity possible. It will be an honor and privilege to work with such a great group of coaches, athletic staff, administrative staff, and student-athletes at Hollins.”
Sullivan came to Hollins with six years of experience coaching cross country and track and field in high school. At Lord Botetourt High School in Daleville, Virginia, he coached numerous All-District, All-Region, and All-State athletes. The cross country teams finished high in the region and, for the first time in school history, both teams recently qualified for the VHSL cross country meet. Some of his high school runners were able to run on the collegiate level.
Sullivan is a certified USA Track and Field Level One coach. He also maintains other professional fitness certifications, while spending the last 20 years in the health, fitness, and wellness field. He is still very active in athletic events and is an avid runner, having competed in various road races from the 5k to eight half-marathons since the mid-90s.
Sullivan is a 1983 graduate of Lord Botetourt High School where he was a member of the National Honor Society. He and his wife reside in Botetourt County.