SANTA BARBARA, Calif. - UC Santa Barbara women's basketball coach Carlene Mitchell continued to assemble her new staff with quality individuals when she hired Robin Thormodsgaard to be the program's new director of operations.
Thormodsgaard brings a wealth of experience and talent to the position after a standout playing career at the University of Iowa and a very successful foray into the business world.
"Hiring Robin to be part of our staff was a no-brainer," Mitchell said. "She is extremely smart and versatile and with her basketball experience to go with her corporate business experience - not to mention her ability to fundraise - Robin will be an integral part of our program."
Thormodsgaard played for C. Vivian Stringer at Iowa where she finished as one of the school's top-25 all-time scorers, scoring 1,046 career points. Thormodsgaard, a native of Brandt, S.D., was a two-time team MVP and is in both the South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame and was recently inducted into the South Dakota Basketball Hall of Fame along with Becky Hammon, currently a star in the WNBA.
"Having played for C. Vivian Stringer, I knew that I wanted to work with Carlene as we have a similar work ethic and passion for basketball," Thormodsgaard said. "I feel very fortunate for the opportunity to be a part of the Gaucho family. The chance to be involved with a collegiate basketball program again, especially one with a legacy like UCSB, is very exciting and I am looking forward to it."
After her playing career, Thormodsgaard was the Hawkeyes radio analyst before moving to Southern California. It was there that she carved out a successful career in business, working at The Thor Group as a corporate account manager and then recently at CB Richard Ellis as a division business administrator. Thormodsgaard worked closely with such highly regarded companies as Wellpoint/Anthem, IBM, Trust Company of the West, Verizon, Northrop Grumman and many others.
She also has worked extensively in the community, coaching in the Manhattan Beach and Hermosa Beach Youth Basketball leagues for 10 years. She was a fundraiser for many club teams such as basketball, baseball, football and soccer. Thormodsgaard was involved with the Pac-10's Cancer Awareness Week and has worked with over 30 other foundation charities such as the National Kidney Foundation and the Shelter Task Force, which helps promote shelter housing projects. Thormodsgaard also worked at numerous other venues such as Lakers All-Access and the Los Angeles Sports and Entertainment events. Recently she also has worked as a Sergeant of Arms for the Manhattan Beach Rotary Club, performing countless hours of community service.