Dan Burns Makes Move To Director of City Park, Recreational Facilities And Athletic Fundraising
June 28, 2012
HARROGATE, TN -- After 18 years of dedication and service as the head coach of the Lincoln Memorial University softball team, Dan Burns will continue his fervent support of Railsplitter athletics as he has begun the transition to the Director of City Park, Recreational Facilities and Athletic Fundraising.
In his new role, his responsibilities will include operation of all aspects of Harrogate Park, maintenance and scheduling of designated University athletic fields and work towards assisting the University in obtaining funding for projects related to LMU Athletics.
The final piece of his new role at Lincoln Memorial University will be of the utmost benefit to the athletic department. Dan provides an extensive list of contacts throughout the community from his years spent in the area as well as throughout the country from the innumerable players he coached in his career. Through that avenue, Burns will look to lead and bolster the fundraising efforts of Railsplitter athletics for the variety of projects slated on the horizon to improve and revamp the athletic facilities.
With more than 40 years of passionate and immeasurable involvement in Lincoln Memorial University athletics, Dan Burns has been an ambassador throughout the region and the country for the school through his representation of Railsplitter athletics.
Burns came to Lincoln Memorial University from Kettering, Ohio in the fall of 1970 to pursue his bachelor's degree while lettering as a dual-sport athlete, competing at a high level in both basketball and baseball. Shortly after his graduation in 1974, the Ohio native began taking the first steps towards becoming a native son of Lincoln Memorial University. In 1976, he was hired as the assistant baseball coach at LMU where he served four years under the legendary tutelage of Dean Bailey.
In the wake of Dean Bailey's retirement, Burns took over the helm of the Lincoln Memorial University baseball program, where he led the Railsplitters from 1981 until 1987.
In 1987, Dan Burns ascended to the Athletic Director position for a one-year stint in that role for Lincoln Memorial University. Burns would leave that position to take over as the Director of Campus and Community Recreation from 1989 until 1995.
At the conclusion of his time spent in that role, Dan Burns returned the field in 1995, as he took over as the head coach of the Lincoln Memorial University softball team. Despite holding no previous experience in coaching softball, Burns' hiring ushered in a meteoric rise to regional relevance and established a winning tradition that had never been seen in the fourteen year history of Lincoln Memorial University softball.
Just two years into his position at the helm of the softball program, Burns commanded the Lady Railsplitters to a 35-10 mark, becoming the first 35-win team in the history of the program. That season, LMU set another record as they notched an astounding 23-3 record at home.
In eighteen seasons, Burns netted 11 30-win seasons with a streak of six consecutive 30-win seasons from 1996 to 2001. From 2004 until 2008, the Lady Railsplitters returned to their dominant form as they rolled off five more consecutive seasons with at least 30 wins.
One of the strongest stretches in the history of the Lincoln Memorial University softball program came from 2006 to 2008 as Dan Burns led the Lady Railsplitters to a 37-27 mark in '06, a 37-18 record in '07, and a 32-16 season in '08.
In 2001, Dan was elected to the Lincoln Memorial University Athletics Hall Of Fame for his contributions on the baseball field and basketball court as a player along with his work as a coach. It was a crowning acheivement and well-deserved recognition for lifelong passionate dedication to the LMU community and Railsplitter athletics.
In December of 2011, Dan was recognized by the National Fastpitch Coaches Association for his 500th victory. At the conclusion of his illustrious career, Burns was ranked among the active coaching leaders in the nation for wins.
All told, he finishes his career with a 536-414-1 record that stands as a .564 career winning-percentage. He made a total of nine conference tournament appearances throughout his time in the Gulf South Conference and the South Atlantic Conference. He coached 27 all-conference performers, one Louisville Slugger/NFCA All-American and a pair of Daktronics All-Americans.
"LMU athletics has been very good to me," Dan said. "Since 1970 to this point, playing and coaching have meant everything. I have made so many friends in the community and gotten to know countless numbers of athletes that have come through the university. Coaching baseball and softball has been a dream come true. Coaching softball for the last 18 years was a challenge and it was very rewarding to work with young ladies. I will miss it. I am looking forward to continue working in the athletic department and take it to greater success in the athletic fundraising area."
Dan will begin his work in his new pursuit at Lincoln Memorial University immediately. In his many years of involvement at Lincoln Memorial University, Dan Burns has seen more than four decades of the evolution, growth and development of not only the university, but the community. Through all the changes, Burns has remained a familiar face, a root to the unflagging mission of LMU Athletics and an indomitably passionate presence whose impact on the Railsplitter community cannot be measured.