Devin Crosby joined Lynn University last May as its seventh athletics director. Most recently, he was deputy athletics director at Kent State University. He has also held leadership positions with other successful athletics programs at Northeastern University, University of Virginia and University of Houston. At Lynn, Crosby is responsible for fostering the learning and service-oriented culture for which Lynn’s sports program is known.
What brought you to Lynn University?
President Kevin Ross’ reputation as a visionary and early adopter, and the mission of creating an environment for student success.
How do you identify with the Fighting Knights mission of spirit, service and strength?
The day I fell in love with Lynn was the first time I walked on its campus and I saw spirit, service and strength banners, because that fits in perfectly with my core values to connect, serve and inspire.
What is your background?
I’m the son of a missionary and was raised in a very blue-collar working environment in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. My mother brought the sense of caring and compassion. So, I felt like I had a really nice combination growing up. My dad was a college athlete as well, so every man in my family was a student athlete.
What was your experience as a student athlete?
I was a sprinter and a middle-distance runner on the college track team: three-year all-conference and a school record holder at Slippery Rock University. And that’s how I met my wife, Cindy. She ran for the rival school ... I saw this beautiful girl running laps around the track, and I went and flagged her down, chased her and caught her.
How does your experience as a student athlete help in your role as an athletics director?
Having been a student athlete, I understand what they go through and I can reflect back on my experience and be of service to them. I feel my purpose is to connect, serve and inspire ... Our No. 1 priority is student success and to educate the whole student; it’s more than just sports ... We’re going to challenge our student athletes physically and mentally, and we’re also going to expect them to be great citizens.
Who do you consider the biggest influences or role models in your life?
I would definitely say my dad because of his work ethic and his ability to focus on what was important and weed out all distractions. My dad kept things very, very simple ... he would say simplicity is the best form of elegance. That’s why I feel an alignment with Lynn’s brand—because it’s modern, it’s simple, it’s clean.
What is one of the most important big-picture accomplishments you’re striving for in your first year at Lynn?
Relationships is the “new marketing” in this day and age of collegiate sports. So, it’s important for me to connect with as many people as possible on this campus, outside this campus, but also, that our coaches and athletes do the same. It’s our goal to integrate our 230 student athletes into the entire campus community and not be a silo.
What do you look for in a coach on your staff?
Spirit, service and strength to me is not a tagline or a motto; it’s our brand promise. It’s how we operate as a group. So during an interview process, I try to find out the potential for a coach to fit into our environment of spirit, service and strength. I feel my job is to make sure that I’m a steward of our environment.
What’s the importance of our facilities to our program?
They’re our portrayal to the outside world—our front porch. Oftentimes, people connect with an institution through athletics, so it’s important that the front porch looks nice and there is spectacular curb appeal. Our readers include alumni, parents and donors.
Our readers include alumni, parents and donors. Is there anything you’d like them to know from you?
I would like for every donor, every parent and every constituent of Lynn to experience a Lynn athletics event. They’ll see that it’s more than just a game—it’s who we are as people; it’s a family affair.