Doane Women’s Basketball Head Coach Tracee Fairbanks announced on Friday that she has resigned her position. Fairbanks has guided the Tigers the past 20 years, taking the team to a pair of NAIA National Tournaments. “The timing is right for my family and I,” Fairbanks said. “I have had all three of our kids while head coach at Doane, and I look forward to more time and flexibility with them and the chance to attend their events/daily activities. There are so many things I enjoy about coaching, but the thing I will miss most are the lifelong relationships with players, coaches, and colleagues.”
Fairbanks will continue at Doane as a professor in the mathematics department and academic advisor, a position she has also held during her tenure at Doane. Doane Athletics Director Matt Franzen said that Fairbanks has made a great impact numerous current and former players. “On behalf of the entire athletics department, we’d like to thank Tracee for her long tenure of service,” Franzen commented. “She has positively impacted a great number of young women through the years and has represented Doane very well in her role. While college coaching is rewarding, there is also a large amount of sacrifice that comes with the job and families sometimes pay the price. Tracee has balanced coaching and family very well but we understand her wish to make a move at this time and look forward to a strong continued relationship.”
A staple of Doane basketball since the early 1990s, Fairbanks was a captain for the first Tigers’ basketball team to advance to the NAIA national semifinals and graduated in 1996. She returned in 1998 as an assistant coach and professor at Doane. In 1999, she was promoted to Head Coach when her mentor, Gene Steinmeyer, left for another coaching position. Over the last 20 seasons, Fairbanks’ teams have accumulated 308 wins with national tournament appearances in 2005 and 2006. In 2005, Fairbanks was named the GPAC Coach of the Year. On the court, 10 NAIA All-American honors were awarded along with 61 all-conference awards to her student-athletes. Most recently, Hanah Barnard was named the 2017 GPAC Player of the Year, the first for Doane in the current conference.