"When I received the letter, I was completely overwhelmed and honored. With so many great coaches who have done so much for our sport, I never considered myself as someone to receive this honor. It is a tribute to the wonderful assistant coaches and student-athletes that I have been blessed to work with and coach." - Amy Deem
Coaching any sport for close to 30 years is a feat unto itself. Lasting that long in the profession at the same school is evidence that one is doing something right.
Since 1990, Amy Deem has been a part of the Miami (Fla.) track & field program, as the native of West Virginia was named the women’s head coach that year while serving as an intern in the compliance department.
By 2008, Deem was named the Director of Track & Field/Cross Country, becoming just the sixth woman to oversee both the men’s and women’s track and cross country programs at an NCAA Division I institution.
The secret to Deem’s longevity in Coral Gables is simple: she’s won.
Deem turned the Hurricanes into a national powerhouse. Prior to her appointment as the head coach in 1990, no Hurricane had recorded an NCAA qualifying mark. Since then, however, Deem and the Hurricanes are a regular fixture at NCAA Championships, as her athletes have laid claim to 14 national championships and nearly 200 First Team All-America honors.
Under her guidance, the Hurricanes’ hurdlers have dominated the national scene. Seven of the aforementioned 14 national championships have come in the hurdles, including an astounding five from Gillian Russell.
As a team, Miami (Fla.) have finished as high as third during the indoor campaign and seventh on the outdoor circuit.
Deem saw her women dominate the Big East during the early portion of her career, capturing two indoor conference championships (2003 and 2004) while laying claim to six outdoor titles (1998-99, 2001-04). Despite leaving the conference shortly after the 2004 title, Miami (Fla.) still owns a pair of conference championship records (4x100 and 4x400).
And since joining the ACC in 2004, Deem has won more ACC Women’s Indoor Championships (four, including the 2017 title) than all but one coach in conference history.
Deem has also made her mark on the sport outside of her tenure as coach of the Hurricanes. She served as the President of the United States Track Coaches Association from 2003-05, in addition to serving as the head coach of the United States team at the 2007 World Championships and the 2001 USATF Junior National team that competed in England and Scotland.
Deem’s success at Miami (Fla.) landed her the duty of serving her country during the 2012 London Olympics, where she was the head coach of the United States women’s team where her team posted one of the most dominating performances in USA Olympic track and field history. The team won 14 medals, including six gold, four silver and four bronze. Three of her former athletes - Murielle Ahoure, T'erea Brown and Lauryn Williams - competed in the Games.
In addition to Ahoure, Brown and Williams, a slew of Hurricanes have gone onto Olympic success during and after learning under Deem, including Patrina Allen and Yolanda McCray.
Deem has been named USTFCCCA South Region Coach of the Year several times, notably in 2016 and 2017 for indoor track & field.