Posted Online: April 18, 2012, 7:34 pm

BHC hires Boyd as women's basketball coach

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By Tom Johnston,

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Karen Boyd is the new women's basketball coach at Black Hawk College. She replaces Gary Altman, who retired after the 2011-12 season.
Karen Boyd is ready to take the next step in her women's basketball-coaching career.

After two years as an assistant for the Black Hawk College program, she has been hired to lead the Lady Braves as head coach.

She takes over for Gary Altman. The Quad-Cities prep coaching icon retired after four years with the Lady Braves after this past season when the Lady Braves finished 16-14.

According to Gary Huber, BHC athletic director, Boyd is the first female coach in the program's history.

Boyd will be doing some serious juggling of duties on campus. She has been the school's director of human resources for three years.

"I've been playing and coaching basketball for some time, and I'm ready to give it a bigger commitment,'' said Boyd. "It's going to require me to do some adjusting of the schedule and working some longer hours to accommodate both things, but we're going to make it work.''

Huber also is excited for the change on the women's bench and the stability that Boyd can bring to the program.

"It's great that she will be on campus as a full-time employee and be there for the girls,'' said Huber, of the position that has been part-time for many years. "I also think it's great that we will have someone with the female perspective leading these young ladies. ... I think she will also bring a lot of wisdom, organization and drive to the program.''

Boyd, who has a number of years of coaching at lower levels under belt, says she is looking forward to leading her own program.

What type of style will her teams employ?

"I'm from California where we predominantly play a fast-paced basketball game,'' she said excitedly. "It's still the style of basketball I love. While that would be my desire, I have to be sure that I have a group of girls that can handle that style of play.''

She is a bit tentative about the recruiting process that goes along with having her own program.

"I have five girls returning from last season, so filling the roster is going to be a priority,'' she said. "Recruiting is going to be a challenge because it's pretty late in the season, and a lot of kids have already made up their minds on where they want to go. We've just got to see who's still interested in Black Hawk College. I have to sell Black Hawk College basketball, as well as academics. That will be my goal.''

Another goal is to find assistants to round out the staff. Huber says the hiring process has just begun.

Boyd said she wants to have a strong recruiting base in the Quad-Cities before expanding that radius.

"This is extremely exciting,'' said Boyd of getting her chance to have her own collegiate program. "It's any coaches dream to step up to that next level and take on a program. It's going to be a challenge, but I'm looking forward to that challenge and I'm hoping that the girls who are going to come and play for me are up for the challenge.

"It's an exciting opportunity to get to coach what you love.''

Meet Karen Boyd

Karen Boyd, human resources director at Black Hawk College, has been hired as the new women's basketball coach at Moline's Black Hawk College. She takes over after two years as an assistant for Gary Altman, who retired at the end of the 2011-12 season.

Personal: Married, husband is William Boyd. Two boys – William, 8, and Nathan, 4. They reside in Davenport.

Coaching history: Spent the last two years as an assistant at BHC. Before that, she served on the staff at Davenport North High School – as a varsity assistant and head sophomore coach.  

Playing history: Grew up in Englewood, Calif., playing ``since I was in third grade,'' she said. Received a scholarship offer from what was then Mt. St. Claire College in Clinton, Iowa. Played two years there before transferring to Augustana.

Education: Graduated from Augie in 1999 with a biology degree. Plans to be a medical researcher changed and she ended up with two advanced degrees (business and organizational leadership) from St. Ambrose and is working on her M.B.A. Degree at SAU.