Osborne Details Journey, Time at TU
March 29, 2011 Leave a comment
by Abby Ferguson
Whatever the size the university, the personnel is important in making sure the university runs smoothly. For Transylvania, Sports Information Director Glenn Osborne is an integral part of the athletics department.
Osborne, who graduated with a journalism degree from the University of Kentucky, came to Transy in the fall of 1999. But before landing at Transy, Osborne jumped to and from a variety of different jobs. He worked at his hometown newspaper in Henderson, Ky., a newspaper in Frankfort, Ky., and also did some freelance work for the Lexington Herald-Leader and Louisville Courier Journal.
While at United Press International in Frankfort, he worked in government and politics. After three years, he decided to move out of journalism altogether. At this point he started his work in public relations for the Kentucky General Assembly, where he stayed for 12 years. But in light of his family, he decided to make a change.
“I wanted to do something a little bit more fun, and I had young children at that time, so I wanted to find something that would be a more positive environment for them to be around,” said Osborne.
This prompted him to search for jobs at the college level. In 1996, the public relations office at Centre College hired him.
“At that point that’s when small colleges like Transylvania and Centre realized how much of a need there was to publicize student-athletes and their athletics program and how that could contribute to the overall PR effort of the college,” Osborne said.
After a long road of job changes, Osborne ended up at Transy where his job has developed over the years.
“It started out being part public relations and part sports information, but it very quickly evolved into a full-time sports information position,” said Osborne.
The evolution of the sports information director position and the changes in personnel in the athletics department can sometimes be tricky for Osborne.
“The challenge has been making the adjustments when the athletic director position changes,” Osborne said.
Technology has also become more of a factor over the years and the athletics department is doing what it can to use it to its advantage.
“When I started here we didn’t do very much with websites, live video or just the technological things we have now,” Osborne said. “There wasn’t a Facebook, there wasn’t a Twitter; we wrote press releases and we faxed them to the newspapers.”
Another obstacle has been the shift in media focus in Lexington, mainly to athletics at the University of Kentucky.
“We were a big deal in Lexington to the Herald-Leader and to the television stations,” said Osborne of when he first came to Transylvania.
Now that the focus has changed, Osborne and the athletics department are doing what they can to keep people aware of what is going on at Transy.
“We try to find unique and interesting stories and develop relationships with individuals of the media. We’ll send them pictures stories, and videos to the TV stations,” said Osborne. “We try to, in a way, do part of their job for them and make it easier, since we know they don’t have the manpower they used to.”
Over the years, Osborne has started to value his student workers and understands they are an important part of his job.
“I am fortunate in that I get to develop really close, personal relationships with my student workers,” Osborne said. “They’ll come to me when they have something on their mind that concerns them or something they’re happy about. I really feel fortunate that I get to know them on that level. … Even though the hours are long, weekends and nights, you’re watching sports for a living and writing about sports for a living. How bad could that be?”