When Michael Galvan accepted the athletic director job at Texas A&M-Texarkana in 2013, the school was taking its first step into college sports with nothing more than a few thoughts on paper. Fast-forward to the present and TAMUT is fresh off its most successful athletic season yet, and Galvan, the architect of the program, has been named 2020-21 RRAC Athletic Director of the Year.
The RRAC Athletic Director of the Year award recognizes the leader who had the best year in overall program performance, facility development, game administration, NAIA Champions of Character commitment, ability to hire and keep quality coaches, program growth in sports and revenue opportunities, contributions at the conference and national levels, and student-athlete development. The award is decided through a vote by all RRAC athletic directors.
Galvan has always been a builder at heart. In his stint from 2004-13 as athletic director at his alma mater, University of the Southwest, he expanded the program from three to 13 sports. The athletic department that he built from scratch at TAMUT now has eight sports and two sparkling on-campus facilities. Galvan provided oversight of a state-of-the-art soccer venue with an artificial turf field and played a pivotal role in the creation of the multi-purpose Patterson Center. That facility includes the home court for the Eagles’ men’s and women’s basketball teams, a fitness center, group exercise room, motor skills lab, classrooms, student life center and locker rooms.
“An award like this is a department award because it takes every single person staying in their lane doing their job in order to function properly,” says Galvan. “The administration continues to support all things involving our student-athletes and, for that, I want to say a special thank you to my President (Dr. Emily Cutrer), who has the best interest of our students at the forefront of all decisions.
“I wanted to extend a special thank you to the entire athletic department, each and every coach at TAMUT, and all student-athletes and colleagues who have made this year such a success for all involved in TAMUT athletics. It’s a great day to be an Eagle!”
In the 2020-21 season, TAMUT earned a share of the RRAC All-Sports Award for the first time. The trophy goes to the school that performed the best across all conference sports, and it resulted in a three-way tie. The Eagles reached the RRAC championship game in men’s basketball, women’s basketball, men’s tennis, baseball and softball this year, while the softball team also brought home the first regular season conference title in school history. Galvan also lended his leadership as the RRAC Chair of Athletic Directors, and TAMUT hosted the RRAC Soccer Championships for the fourth consecutive year.
Galvan was selected as the RRAC Athletic Director of the Year three times while at Southwest. He was also a three-time nominee for the Under Armour Athletic Director of the Year award and a two-time nominee for the NAIA’s Coach of Character award. Galvan also served as the Mustangs’ baseball head coach during his tenure.
At both schools, Galvan has emphasized servant leadership with requirements for teams to be active in the community. TAMUT has supported the NAIA Champions of Character initiative with food drives, fundraiser support, youth camps in underprivileged areas, readings at elementary schools, Toys for Tots, and city-wide clean-up efforts among other activities.
“Michael has been one of the mainstays in our conference since 2004,” says RRAC Commissioner Tony Stigliano. “He has been one of the most influential administrators in our history and has contributed greatly to the growth of the RRAC. It’s no surprise that he has built a strong foundation and a highly competitive program at A&M-Texarkana.”
Galvan is married to the former Amber Shannon, who also works in the TAMUT athletic department as Academic Athletics Coordinator. They have two boys, Ryan (19) and Alex (17).
RRAC Athletic Directors of the Year
|2008-09||Michael Galvan, Southwest|
|2009-10||Kevin Millikan, Texas Wesleyan|
|2010-11||Michael Galvan, Southwest|
|2011-12||Michael Galvan, Southwest|
|2012-13||Jack Hank, Our Lady of the Lake|
|2013-14||Janet Eaton, Wiley|
|2014-15||Jack Hank, Our Lady of the Lake|
|2015-16||Dr. Joseph Morale, Wiley|
|2016-17||Donnita Drain-Rogers, Langston|
|2017-18||Adam Jonson, LSU Alexandria|
|2018-19||Lucas Morgan, LSU Shreveport|
|2019-20||Ashley Walyuchow, Houston-Victoria|
|2020-21||Michael Galvan, Texas A&M-Texarkana|