- Leanne Grotke Award (2020)
Patti McCormack (BS ’80) came to Indiana University in 1976 as a highly-decorated, multi-sport standout from Akron, Ohio, to play basketball. Two years later, her playing career came to a premature end when she suffered a career-ending injury. While her playing career was over, her impact on sports in the state of Indiana was just beginning.
That transition started during her undergraduate years when, in 1978, she served as a volunteer assistant basketball coach at Bloomington South H.S. She’s continued to make an impact on sports in the state of Indiana ever since as a high school coach, college coach, high school administrator and through her involvement in a series of professional organizations.
After graduating from IU in 1980, McCormack worked as a teacher and boys basketball coach at Cornell (Ill.) H.S. from 1980-83. She then moved to Flora, Ind., where she spent eight years as a teacher and girls basketball coach. Next up was a three-year stint at Ball State as an assistant coach/recruiting coordinator for the Cardinals until 1992. Since then, she’s spent the last 28 years at Lowell (Ind.) High School in a variety of capacities, including teacher, girls’ basketball coach, assistant athletic director and, upon retiring from coaching 10 years ago, athletic director.
Her successes are plentiful. She’s won more than 300 games as a high school coach and led her teams to eight sectional championships, two regionals, and seven conference titles. As an administrator, she was named the Indiana Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association’s Indiana Athletic Administrator of the Year in 2015, and she’s currently serving her third term on the IHSAA’s Board of Directors.