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A UT endowment established to honor longtime women’s athletic director Joan Cronan provides a graduate fellowship to Lady Vols who wish to follow in Cronan’s footsteps and advocate for women’s athletics.

Raven Chavanne, left, poses with former UT women’s athletic director Joan Cronan.

The first recipient of the Joan Cronan Lady Vol Graduate Fellowship is four-time All-American softball star Raven Chavanne, who holds team records for career batting average and stolen bases. She is currently pursuing a master’s degree in sport management. The first in her family to earn a college degree, Chavanne earned her bachelor’s in political science with a minor in information sciences and technology in 2013. She also played for the USA National Team in 2013.

Cronan served UT for thirty-two years before retiring last June. The endowment is being announced today as part of the dedication ceremonies for the new Joan Cronan Volleyball Practice Facility on Stephenson Drive.

From left: Jeffrey Fairbrother, head of the Department of Kinesiology, Recreation, and Sports Studies; Raven Chavanne; Joan Cronan; and donors Janet McKinley and Ann Furrow.

A group led by prominent UT alumnae Ann Furrow, Frankie Wade, and Janet McKinley conceived of the fellowship to honor Cronan and made the initial donations to fund it.

“Through this endowed scholarship,” said McKinley, “Joan’s legacy of excellence, leadership, passion and commitment will endure and also help to make a student’s career dreams come true.”

For more information about the Joan Cronan Lady Vol Graduate Fellowship Endowment, contact Randy Atkins at 865-974-3994 or

C O N T A C T :

Randy Atkins (865-974-3994,