A veteran of Ohio Valley and Sun Belt conferences, and now Conference USA, Bill “Doc E” Edwards, was named Head Athletic Trainer at WKU in 1983, after six years of service as an Assistant Athletic Trainer. He was named an Associate Athletic Director-Director of Athletic Training and Sports Medicine in 2009. Countless student-athletes and student athletic trainers who have worked with him during his almost 40 years at WKU count him among their most significant influences during their time on the Hill.
Under Edwards’ leadership, the program has grown from a staff of three to 12 Certified Athletic Trainers who provide health care for all 16 WKU sports teams. In addition to the athletic training staff, Edwards coordinates a large group of sports medicine specialists (team physicians and physical therapists) to ensure appropriate, timely and state-of-the-art health care for WKU student-athletes. Many of these professionals were attracted to WKU not only by the outstanding athletic programs, but by the exemplary reputation of Edwards and his staff. In addition to his daily athletic training duties, Edwards has served as a faculty member since 1977 and teaches in the School of Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport at WKU.
When he arrived on the Hill in 1970, Edwards began working with athletes as a Student Trainer. A Physical Education major and Health Education minor, as well as a member of Phi Delta Theta Fraternity serving as President in 1973-1974, he received his B.S. in 1974. He went on to receive his M.A. in Secondary Education and Health Education from WKU in 1976. He is certified as an Athletic Trainer with the National Athletic Trainers Association, a designation he has held since 1975. He is also a Licensed Athletic Trainer through the State of Kentucky Board of Medical Licensure.
In 2011, Edwards was inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Trainers Society (KATS) Hall of Fame. He served as Treasurer of the KATS Board of Directors for many years. He is a member of the Alumni W-Club Board of Directors and has served as Treasurer since 1996. His many career accolades include serving as a member of the Hilltopper Hall of History Committee and being named Volunteer of the Year for the Alumni W-Club.
He is married to the former Jennie Willoughby, and they have two daughters, Faith and Rachel. Between them, the family has six WKU degrees. Including Faith’s husband, Corey Johnson, and Rachel’s fiancé, Will Conley, that degree number totals eight.