Rudder is familiar with the Lions student-athletes, a after serving as the interim head coach of the program this past season and. Prior to last season, he served as the full-time assistant for one year and as a part-time assistant leading the multi-events athletes. In 2017-18, the Lions won 12 medals at the Ontario University Athletics (OUA) championships and eight at the U SPORTS championships, with the men’s team moving up nine places nationally from the previous year and the women’s team climbing seven.
Rudder came to York with a wealth of experience working with professional sports teams and Olympic, world and collegiate athletes, as well as implementing youth development programs to successful elite junior athletes. As the chief coach and manager of Athletics Barbados, he oversaw a number of tremendous performances by the country’s track and field athletes, including Shakera Reece winning bronze in the women’s 100m at the 2011 Pan Am Games and Akeila Jones claiming gold in the women’s long jump at the 2014 world junior championships.
“From a nation-wide search, Ray emerged a clear leader,” said Jennifer Myers, the executive director of York Athletics & Recreation. “The combination of his experience, credentials and leadership make him the perfect candidate to lead the next transformation of our program. Ray has established a tremendous positive culture within his teams and last year’s results are testament to what he was able to build in just one season. York has a long history of success in track and field and we are confident in Ray’s ability to continue to keep the Lions at the top of the standings.”
Rudder has a bachelor’s degree in physical education and sport from the International School of Physical Education and Sport in Cuba, and a master’s degree in management science from the Indiana Institute of Technology earned in 2014.
“I am honoured to be chosen to serve the Lions student-athletes and I am grateful for the opportunity to have a positive impact on them and the York track and field program,” said Rudder.
Rudder will spend the rest of the summer continuing to recruit for the 2018-19 season and will welcome his team back this fall as the Lions look to build on a strong past year, where both track and field squads finished sixth at the U SPORTS championships.
For the full story, visit the York Lions website.