Sanchez named Track and Field Director of Ops
CHAMPAGNE, Ill.— The Illinois track and field squads have landed at their chief of operations Juanita Sanchez. Sanchez joins the Illini after spending the 2021-22 season at Iowa State in the same role.
“Juanita joins us and comes highly recommended by our sport’s key stakeholders,” she said Petros Kyprianou. “I have experienced their energy, enthusiasm and ability to handle the extremely demanding job of Director of Operations with passion and high organizational skills. She is an emerging personality in our sport and has experience at an NCAA-winning institution (Texas Tech). along with invaluable experience at Iowa State and others. Juanita will play an integral role in what I call a symphony orchestra where all members of our staff and team play their own instrument at such a high level and in harmony to produce the most amazing sound. what I call championships!”
During their only season at Iowa State, both men’s and women’s cross-country teams improved their NCAA championship ranks, breaking within the top ten. The men finished second and the women ninth compared to eighth and 25th last year. At the Big 12 championships, both the men’s and women’s teams finished second.
“I am excited about the opportunity to work at the University of Illinois and to work with Coach Petros Kyprianou to grow that program,” Sanchez said. “I can’t wait to be part of the Fighting Illinois family and get to work. “
She was responsible for all four ISU home games, including the 2022 Big 12 Indoor Championships. In addition to her organizational responsibilities, she also oversaw all budgets, external and internal logistics for the 2021-22 school year.
Before moving to Iowa State, she spent two seasons (2019-21) at Texas Tech University as a Volunteer Coach/Operations Staff. In this capacity, she organized all of the home meetings for the 2020 and 2021 indoor seasons, including the 2021 Big 12 Indoor Championship. She also supported the recruitment front for official and unofficial visits.
Sanchez spent 2018-19 as an assistant sprint and jump coach at West Virginia Wesleyan College. Here, in addition to her coaching duties, she took care of travel needs, fundraising and recruitment. Under her command, four of her athletes were named All-Conference honors and placed in the top three at the 2019 MEC Outdoor Championships.
Before her coaching days, she was a research assistant at Mississippi College. Here she was responsible for requesting orders, organizing high school grounds/track meetings and managing social media accounts.
Sanchez earned her Masters in Sports Administration from Mississippi College and her Bachelor of Science in Sports Administration from Belhaven University.