Merlyn Courser, Vermont – 2002
Merlyn has been a teacher/coach at the Lyndon Institute High School in Lyndon Center, Vermont, for 40 years. During that time, she has coached girls’ field hockey, softball, basketball, track & field, gymnastics, lacrosse, and skiing. Her classroom experience has included teaching biology, health, and chemistry for three years and physical education for 37 years. For the past 10 years, she has served as athletic director.
Her league affiliations include the Northern Vermont Athletic Council, the Northern Vermont Hockey League, and the Vermont Football League. She holds membership in the NIAAA and NFHS.
In 1999-2000, Merlyn served as President of USADA. She is also a member of the Northern Vermont Athletic council, the Vermont State Athletic Directors Association, and serves on the Vermont Principals Association academic standards committee and on three sport committees. From 1969-1975, Merlyn was involved with the Division for Girls’ and Women’s sport.
Merlyn coached gymnastics for 15 years, field hockey for 30 years, basketball for 30 years, Nordic and alpine skiing for 15 years, cross country for 15 years (winning 3 state championships), track & field for 35 years (winning 8 state championships) and softball for 15 years. “We won more than we lost, but I never kept track of win/loss records. We were successful and had fun and, at 62, I still loves sports and athletics.”
Merlyn has been recognized by varied organizations for her lifelong contribution to girls’ and women’s athletics. She was listed in Outstanding Young Women in America (1965), served as a timer at the 1980 Olympic Games for skiing, received the Distinguished Alumni Award from Lyndon State College, was named the NFICA Track & Field Coach of the Year in 1992, 1993, 1994, and 1995, named UVM Outstanding Vermont Teacher of the Year, and awarded the Track & Filed NFHS Section I Distinguished Service Award. She was co-recipient of the Vermont Athletic Director of the Year Award for large schools.