Staley As Coach
Although never having coached a game, Staley agreed to become women's coach at Temple University for the Owls in April 2000. At first denying the offer, she was persuaded by Olympic teammate Teresa Edwards. At that point, Temple had not seen a winning season in more than 10 years. Staley managed to achieve an impressive 10-6 start the first season. Even the fans took notice. Previously averaging 518 fans per game, 1,754 people attended for Staley's regular-season coaching debut.
After Temple won the Philadelphia Big Five Championship and its first-ever Atlantic 10 Conference Championship and an NCAA Tournament berth, Staley was named 2001-02 Big Five Coach of the Year. In October 2002, she signed a five-year contract extension to coach Temple. The agreement includes the NCAA tournament.
While she coached, Staley still played for the Charlotte Sting, which went to the WNBA Championship finals. There she averaged 9.3 points per game and a league third best 5.6 assists per game. She also played in the 2001 WNBA All-Star Games, racking up 4 points and 3 assists in 15 minutes for the East Team. In 2002, she was named to the USA Basketball World Championship Team.
Dawn Staley earned awards and recognition on the basketball court as well as in her community. She achieved Olympic gold, national championships, and numerous player of the year and MVP awards as a basketball star. The skilled player easily made the transition to coach to teach a new generation of young players. Assisting others to achieve their dreams, she founded the Dawn Staley Foundation, and an after school projects and scholarship programs that help economically underprivileged girls become self-confident young women. The foundation's mission is to create a future of hope for at-risk youth by providing opportunities which help them realize their dreams and become productive and responsible citizens. The creation and support of educational and sports programs which challenge minds, build character, and help youth to develop to their fullest potential academically, socially, and physically is the essence of the foundation. To achieve its mission, the foundation supports a variety of programs in North Philadelphia.
The Dawn Staley After School Project provides a multi-faceted program designed to empower young women with the necessary education and life skills to become responsible and proactive community leaders through academics, sport activity, and community out-reach. Staley is noted for her work ethic, dedication, and commitment to both basketball and to young people.