Chattanooga cross country and track and field head coach Andy Meyer announced the addition of Patrick Gildea as the Mocs assistant coach.
“We are excited to have Patrick on our staff,” Meyer said. “He has great experience as an athlete and coach. He has run at the top level in college as well as professionally for a number of years in the 5K and 10K.”
Gildea, a graduate of the University of Tennessee, ran cross country and track and field. He helped the Volunteers to the 2002 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field National title as well as the SEC crown.
In Indoor Track and Field, the Vols won the SEC Eastern Division Challenge.
He led UT to back-to-back NCAA National Championship appearances. In 2002, he led the Vols to the NCAA Region Championship title and back-to-back NCAA National Championship appearances. The 2001 team finished second. He earned all-region honors in 2001 and 2002 and was named to the All-SEC Team.
He was named a SEC Cross Country Athlete of the Week and the Most Valuable Runner. He was one of two Vol runners to score in every race of the season. Gildea received the Vega-Watts Award given for the greatest sacrifice to compete for the team.
Following his collegiate career, he went on to compete professionally in track and field. He placed in the Top 10 in numerous competitions in 2008 and 2009. Gildea achieved international recognition, being selected to two International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) World Championship events in 2006 and 2008. He finished seventh at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships in the 10,000 meter run.
“As a coach, he developed many of the top runners in the state,” Meyer said. “He will bring an attitude of success and the experience as a member of a national championship team to our kids. Patrick has worked with all calibers of athletes and brought each and every one of them success.”
Gildea was a graduate assistant coach at Saint Francis University from 2010-2012 where he guided numerous student-athletes to All-NEC performances in both cross country and track and field.
Following his time at Saint Francis, he was the head cross country coach and assistant track and field coach at West High School as well as a teacher in the classroom from 2012-2020.
Gildea is the director/principal of the Knoxville Distance Project where he developed a training program for an athlete who qualified for the 2020 Olympic trials.
After graduating from UT with a degree Psychology, Gildea earned his M.Ed. in leadership at Saint Francis.
“Most impressively, I was amazed by how many of his colleagues and fellow runners spoke of his character and his humility as a person and his great capacity to listen,” Meyer said. “Patrick will be a great addition to our team as a coach, a leader and a mentor for the kids in our program.”