June 1, 2012
DeKALB, Ill. - Northern Illinois University women's basketball assistant coach Joe Conroy was promoted to associate head coach, NIU head coach Kathi Bennett announced Friday.
"I'm very happy for Joe," Bennett said. "There isn't anyone who works harder and Coach Conroy is very deserving. He has been my right-hand man since I've been here."
"Having the opportunity to work with Coach Bennett for the last two years, I've learned a great deal about how successful programs are built," Conroy said. "Her confidence and faith in my ability means a lot to me and I look forward to continuing to assist her in implementing her vision for NIU women's basketball."
The only remaining member of Bennett's original 2010-11 coaching staff at NIU, Conroy has played an integral role in helping quickly elevate the NIU women's basketball program to its first two-win Mid-American Conference Tournament appearance since 2007. Entering his third season with the Huskies, Conroy has aided Bennett through working with the post players, scheduling, handling equipment, scouting, and recruiting.
Known for his passion for basketball, Conroy spent five years as a coach at Woodstock and Woodstock North High Schools before joining Bennett and the Huskies. From 2005-08, he guided the WHS boys before venturing to WNHS, a new school at the time, to get its boys basketball program off the ground.
Conroy spent the three seasons before his tenure in Woodstock as the top assistant for head coach Sandy Botham and the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Conroy helped the Panthers set the foundation for the team's second ever NCAA Tournament appearance.
Prior to his time with Milwaukee, Conroy served as the top assistant and recruiting coordinator for head coach Linda Wunder at Eastern Illinois University. In Conroy's first year at EIU, the Panthers doubled their Ohio Valley Conference win total.
Before working with EIU, Conroy pioneered the Director of Basketball Operations position at Northern Illinois University under head coach Carol Hammerle from 1999-01.
An active member of both the Women's Basketball Coaches Association and the National Association of Basketball Coaches, Conroy spent a large portion of his coaching career at Illinois Valley Community College, a Division III junior college in Oglesby, Ill. He served as IVCC's head women's coach for eight seasons, manning the sidelines from 1993-1999. He led his squad to a third-place finish at the National Junior College Athletic Association national tournament in 1995-96. A recipient of the NFCAA Rose Bataglia Sportsmanship Award, Conroy successfully placed 100% of his junior college athletes at the university level.
The 47-year-old Spring Valley, Ill. native graduated from DePaul in 1990 and is married to the former Cari Hoskins. The couple resides in DeKalb with their three sons, Ethan (14), Mason (13), and Porter (9).