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Anne Donovan, a 1983 ODU alumna, will receive a National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Silver Anniversary Award on Sunday, Jan. 13, 2008 at the NCAA Honors Celebration. The NCAA Honors Celebration will be in Nashville.

The awards are given each year to recognize six distinguished former student-athletes on their 25th anniversary as college graduates.

During her four years as a Lady Monarch basketball player, Donovan helped ODU win a national championship in 1980 and make two more "Final Four" appearances.

A native of Ridgewood, N.J., Donovan was one of the most highly recruited high school players in the nation. A graduate of Paramus Catholic, the 6 foot 8 inch center earned Parade Player of the Year honors in 1979 before signing with ODU. Donovan became the all-time leading scorer and rebounder in ODU history with 2,719 points and 1,976 rebounds. She is still the NCAA's all-time shot blocker with 801.

As the tallest player in the women's game, Donovan quickly made her presence known both on and off the court. She was recognized by virtually every postseason and All-America squad in the nation during her ODU career. She earned Kodak All-America honors for three years and Academic All-America honors for two straight seasons.

Her honors culminated in 1983, with her selection as the first female Naismith College Player of the Year. The trophy winner is selected by a collection of leading basketball journalists, coaches, administrators and fans from around the country.

As an ambassador for her sport, Donovan achieved international recognition as a member of the U.S. gold medal-winning women's basketball team at the 1984 Summer Olympic Games in Los Angeles. She continued to play with the national team through the 1988 Summer Olympic Games in Seoul, South Korea.

In 1987, Donovan returned to ODU as a part-time assistant coach, following a five year stint as a professional player in Japan. She was later elevated to full-time assistant coach and remained at ODU until 1997.

Donovan has also served as head coach at East Carolina University and the American Basketball League's Philadelphia Rage, and as interim head coach with the WNBA's Indiana Fever.

In 2001, she became head coach of the Charlotte Sting and subsequently led the team to the WNBA finals. In 2002, Donovan and the Sting won the WNBA Eastern Conference title.

In 2003, Donovan moved west to serve as head coach of the Seattle Storm, leading the Storm to the WNBA title in 2004.

On Jan. 12, 2006, Donovan was named head coach of the USA Basketball Senior National team. The squad qualified for the upcoming Olympic Games in Beijing, China, with a 101-71 win over Cuba last month in Chile.

Donovan served as an assistant coach for USA Basketball during its gold medal wins in the FIBA World Championships in 1998 and 2002 as well as the Olympic games in 2004.

She is a member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame, the Virginia Sports Hall of Fame, the Old Dominion University Sports Hall of Fame and the College Sports Information Directors of America Academic All-America Hall of Fame.

In 2005, she was named the All-Time Sun Belt Conference Women's Basketball Player.

This article was posted on: October 16, 2007

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