May 10, 2014

Head Swimming & Diving Coach Art Brandt to Retire

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (Blugolds.com) – UW-Eau Claire men's and women's swimming & diving head coach Art Brandt will retire at the end of the 2013-14 school year, Director of Athletics Scott Kilgallon has announced.

Brandt has been with the Blugold swimming & diving programs since 2004. He was an assistant coach for three seasons before serving as associate head coach for two seasons, and then was hired as the Blugolds' head coach in 2008.

"I want to professionally thank Coach Brandt for serving as a great coach and personally for being a great colleague," Kilgallon said. "Coach Brandt's coaching knowledge is tremendous as evidenced by the many school records broken by his swimmers during his career. Most importantly, I want to thank Art for always keeping academics and the welfare of his student-athletes as top priority.  It is obvious to me that the swimmers knew they had a special coach who always looked out for their best interest. I greatly appreciate everything Art has done for the program."

During Brandt's time as head coach, Blugolds earned 26 All-American honors in addition to winning 34 individual conference titles and two relay conference titles. Women's swimmers that competed during Brandt's tenure as head coach hold 18 out of 19 school records, and combined with the men, a total of 25 school records have been set. He was named WIAC Coach of the Year three times, in 2010 for the women and 2011 for both men and women.

Not only have Blugolds excelled athletically under Brandt but have also done well academically. Three Blugolds were named WIAC Scholar-Athletes while two received Capital One Academic All-District recognition.  The College Swimming Coaches Association of America has also recognized the team with Scholar All-American honors.

Brandt has been coaching swimming for 40 years. Prior to coaching the Blugolds, Brandt's experience included coaching positions in men's and women's swimming and diving in Wisconsin and Minnesota for almost 28 years. He also was a varsity swimmer during his time as an undergraduate student at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and also coached for six years in Ohio.

At Miami University, Brandt earned his bachelor's degree in industrial education in 1970. He earned his master's degree in special education from UW-Eau Claire in 1997.

In addition to coaching, Brandt worked as a general and special education teacher for 22 years and in adult rehabilitation for 11 years. Currently he is ending his 11th year as a lecturer for the UW-Eau Claire Special Education Department and will continue to work in the department.

Brandt lives in Menomonie with this wife Bobby. The couple has three children (Hannah, Josh, and Max).

-KM-