PRAIRIE VIEW – Prairie View A&M University Interim Athletics Director Alicia Pete has removed the interim tag from La Tonia Thirston, promoting her to Director of Sports Information.
“Ms. Thirston has become one of the most respected and dependable assets within our athletics department,” Pete said. “She’s been an integral part of our teams success and is one of our department’s unsung heroes.”
With nearly two decades of athletics communications experience under her belt, Thirston arrived at The Hill in November 2016. Following the departure of Duane Lewis to Arkansas-Pine Bluff, she took over the reins of the PVAMU athletics communications department in an interim role in February 2019.
She has overseen the publicity efforts of an impressive run of success for Panther athletics, having led the promotional tactics for the 2018 SWAC Softball and Men’s Outdoor Track championship-winning teams as well as the 2019 SWAC Men’s Basketball, Bowling and Soccer championship squads.
Additionally, Thirston has served as the lead statistician at all Panther home sporting events and has been actively involved in various external operations as well as the day-to-day management of communications efforts within the athletic department.
"I am elated," Thirston said. "It's funny, but this is one of two titles that I have not held since my stint in athletics, and I appreciate Mrs. Pete for giving me this opportunity."
A stalwart in the Alabama State University sports information department from 2001 until her arrival at Prairie View, Thirston’s career began in Alabama State University’s office of admissions and recruitment as a recruiter. She went on to hold various administrative titles within ASU athletics and was the inaugural bowling coach for the Lady Hornets, guiding the team to a division championship during its second year of existence and ultimately going on to oversee the communications efforts for several championship-winning teams for Alabama State.
Thirston is an active member of CoSIDA (College Sports Information Directors of America), BCSIDA (Black College Sports Information Directors of America), as well as a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She is also a member of Alpha Kappa Psi, and Who's Who of America.
The native of Waukegan, Illinois earned her Bachelor of Science degree in psychology in 1991. Thirston has two daughters, LaTajia and LaTyahna, both of whom are students at Prairie View A&M.