The 2019-20 season marked the 18th for Kathy Lanese as cross country and track coach at Case Western Reserve. She has led the Spartan cross country teams for the past 17 years and served as an assistant for the track & field program for 11.
The longest tenured female coach at the university, Lanese was appointed for her second stint at CWRU on June 5, 2001. Until 2006, she also served as head coach for the women’s track & field team.
Most recently, Lanese guided the 2018 team to the best finish by the men's squad in 15 years at the NCAA Championships, with the team placing 21st overall at the National Championship meet. The squad also placed fourth at the Great Lakes Region Championships, and saw three of its runners - Trey Razanauskas, David Hall and Zach Roshon - earn all-region honors. On the women's side, Kelly helped Madeline Lindemann earn all-region honors and qualify for an individual berth to the NCAA Championships for the first time in her career.
Since her return to University Circle, Lanese has coached a total of 14 NCAA All-Americans in cross country and track. She guided Esther Erb, 2008 NCAA Champion in the women’s 10,000-meter run, and has led multiple distance runners and relay teams to school record-breaking performances. In addition, four of Lanese’s cross country runners have received NCAA Postgraduate Scholarships, and one was a finalist for the NCAA Woman of the Year award in addition to receiving the Fullbright Scholarship in Vienna, Australia.
During her career, Lanese has earned a multitude of coach of the year awards. She has been tabbed Ohio Track and Cross Country Coaches Association Coach of the Year seven times (most recently in 2013), USTFCCCA Great Lakes Region Coach of the Year once (2006) and head of the UAA Women’s Cross Country Coaching Staff of the Year twice (2006 and 2008).
Under Lanese’s tutelage, CWRU cross country has also been represented at the NCAA Championship Meet in each season since 2006. That streak includes five consecutive qualifying years for the women’s team from 2006-2010. During that stretch, the Spartan women finished in the top 10 twice, including 2007, when the team finished sixth in the nation – the highest national finish for any Spartan athletic team in school history. In 2008, both the men’s and women’s squads ran at the NCAA Championship, marking the first time that the two competed concurrently at that meet.
Lanese first came to CWRU in 1990 when she was named the head women's cross country coach and assistant track & field coach. She left the university briefly in 1993 to pursue a position in sports medicine, but she quickly returned to the coaching ranks as women’s cross country and track & field head coach at Cleveland State University from 1994-96. Lanese moved on to serve in the same capacity at John Carroll University from 1996-2001.
In addition to coaching, Lanese is a member of the Behavior Health Committee and has served on the Women’s Leadership Council at the university level. She is currently the out-going President on a national level for the USTFCCCA for Division III Cross Country and will be speaking on mental training at the 2015 USTFCCCA national convention in December. She has held the positions of President of the Ohio Track and Cross Country Coaches and Vice President of the USTFCCCA. Lanese, a 2010 graduate of the NCAA Women’s Coaches Academy, also attended the USTFCCCA Women's Coaching Summit held in San Antonio, Texas in December of 2011.
A graduate of Ohio University, Lanese was a scholarship athlete who competed in middle-distance and distance events. She was a member of a Bobcat track team that won two consecutive Mid-American Conference Championships (1983-84) and the All-Ohio Cross Country Championship in 1982. Individually, Lanese finished 11th and 14th, respectively, at the MAC Championship and was a member of the record-setting 3,200-meter relay and distance medley relay teams. During her senior year, Lanese was named captain of both the track and cross country teams. She was voted the team's most improved runner in 1985 and also set an indoor record in the 1,500-meter run.
Lanese received her Bachelor of Science in Foods and Nutrition from Ohio University and both her certification in athletic training and her graduate studies in exercise science from Cleveland State.
Lanese resides in Cleveland Heights and has two children, Evan and Kasey. Evan is a graduate of CWRU.