Complete List of Elizabeth Gillis Award winners
HOUSTON - Rice University women's track and field/cross country head coach Jim Bevan was named the recipient of the annual Elizabeth Gillis Award for Exemplary Service at the town hall meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
Named after the wife of former Rice President Malcolm Gillis, the Elizabeth Gillis Service Award for Exemplary Service recognizes Rice staff members who demonstrate unflagging commitment and service to the university.
Bevan helped guide the Owls to Conference USA championships in both cross country and outdoor track and field in 2016 and was named the C-USA Coach of the Year in each of those respective seasons. In his 31 seasons at Rice, Bevan has been named Coach of the Year 11 times between the Southwest Conference, WAC and C-USA.
"Mostly I've gotten to know Coach Bevan through his athletes, his students, and they speak so enormously well of what he has contributed to our campus," Rice President David Leebron said. "It's just extraordinary."
In addition to the Owls' athletic success under Bevan, Rice also excels in the classroom. In 2016 Rice had six student-athletes earn USTFCAAA All-Academic Honors while the team was recognized as well.
President Leebron also cited the nomination letter from Director of Athletics Joe Karlgaard, who said Bevan understands the culture of Rice and acts with great integrity.
"He always puts the academic commitments of his athletes above their training, often excusing runners from practice for study sessions and medical school interviews," Karlgaard wrote. "He is as proud of Rice's commitment to world-class education as he is of the titles his teams have won on the track."