Kris A. Diaz '78 is in his 12th year as the athletic director at Baldwin Wallace University in 2019-20.
Diaz was an assistant football and track coach at the University from 1998 to 2008 and served as the assistant athletic director from 2006 to 2007. He is a tenured member of the health and physical education faculty and has been a program coordinator in that department. In 2006, he served as a faculty fellow in the office of the vice president for academic affairs.
A graduate of Amherst Steele High School (1974), Diaz graduated with honors from BW in 1978. He earned his master's degree in physical education from the University of Akron the following year and a specialist's degree in educational administration from Moorhead State (Minn.) University in 1994.
He began his coaching career in 1976 at BW as a student-assistant under the legendary Lee Tressel and was a graduate assistant coach at the University of Akron during the 1978-79 school year.
The following fall, he joined Friends University in Wichita, Kansas where he served until 1983 as an instructor in physical education, as an admission counselor, assistant coach in football and basketball and as head track coach. He received an Outstanding Young Man of America award in 1982.
From 1983-89, Diaz was an assistant professor of physical education at Moorhead State as well as an assistant football and track coach, assistant athletic director, interim facility director (1985) and served on a number of other university committees In 1989, he accepted a position an assistant professor of physical education and as head football coach at Bemidji State (Minn.) University where he stayed until 1996. Twice at Bemidji State, Diaz was selected as Coach of the Year.
Prior to returning to BW in 1998, Diaz returned to Ohio and served as a teacher and the head football coach at Elyria Catholic High School in 1996 and 1997.
"The opportunity to lead a storied athletic program, such as B-W, is a dream come true for me," said Diaz. "For more than a century Yellow Jacket athletics have been built on the broad shoulders of exceptional athletic directors, like Ray Watts, Lee Tressel and Steve Bankson, as well as coaches such as Marcie French, Bob Packard, Dave Demmerle, Bob Fisher, Bill Taraschke, John Summa, Cheri Harrer, Vicki Brault, Rich Fleming, Sparky Adams and many others. It's very humbling to be responsible for that tradition.
We continue to be blessed with what I feel is the finest teaching and coaching staff in the OAC and all of Division III," said Diaz. "Our coaches are teachers first and have the best interests of our student-athletes first and foremost. It is a great group of men and women."
In addition to his duties at BW, Diaz is active nationally in NCAA Division III. IN February of 2011, he was elected to serve on the Elective Committee of the National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators.
Diaz and his wife Debi reside in Amherst, Ohio and have three children, including Jessica, a 2008 BW graduate, and sons, Jacob and Nicholas.