June 22, 2021 – Davidson-Davie head basketball coach Matt Ridge will become the college’s new athletics director on July 1, following the retirement of Kenneth Kirk. Ridge has been head coach of STORM basketball since 2007.
“We are excited to enter a new era of STORM athletics,” said Dr. Darrin Hartness, president of the college. “Matt is already an integral member of the STORM family, and we know that his knowledge of our campus culture and familiarity with our local communities will help push all our athletic teams to new heights.”
Ridge will remain head coach of men’s basketball, which finished its most successful season to date in April when the STORM captured the runner-up title in the NJCAA Division II championship. As athletics director, Ridge now is also responsible for women’s volleyball and men’s and women’s golf.
“I’m ecstatic to be the next athletics director at Davidson-Davie Community College,” said Ridge. “I appreciate this incredible opportunity to work with all of our coaches and student-athletes on the road to success.”
Ridge leaves a long career as a high school math teacher, most recently at Southwest Guilford, to take the new position at Davidson-Davie. Before coaching the STORM, Ridge coached basketball, golf, and track at the high school level and served as an assistant JV basketball coach at UNC-Chapel Hill.
STORM athletics has enjoyed tremendous success since 2007, both as a popular extracurricular activity for student-athletes and fans and in the record books. Women’s volleyball and men’s basketball were the first additions to the revived athletics program. Men’s and women’s golf debuted a year ago, although the first season was complicated by COVID. Both the basketball and volleyball teams have traveled to national championships. The increasingly successful STORM program moved from Division III to Division II in 2018.
Retiring athletics director Kenneth Kirk has served in various roles at Davidson-Davie since 1991, including admissions, retention, and advising. He has been head of athletics and wellness since Davidson-Davie revived its athletics program in 2007.
“I’m grateful for all Ken has done to lead STORM athletics over the past 14 years,” said Ridge. “I look forward to carrying on the STORM tradition of excellence for our students, college, and community.”
Davidson-Davie Community College (www.DavidsonDavie.edu), which incorporated Davie County into its name in 2021, is a fully accredited, multi-campus college where students of all ages and backgrounds pursue academic and career-focused education in order to build successful futures. As one of 58 institutions within the North Carolina Community College System, Davidson-Davie offers more than 40 degree and professional certificate programs, as well as affordable college-credit coursework to students who plan to transfer to four-year schools. With a mission to serve the changing needs of students competing in a global environment, Davidson-Davie is committed to quality education, innovative and equitable learning experiences, training, and support across a wide range of 21st-century career fields.