Carol D. "Joey" Eustis, dean of the Community College of Baltimore County Essex campus' School of Health Professions who earlier had been director of athletics and coached the women's basketball and field hockey teams, died of cancer May 9 at her Westminster home.
She was 69.
"She has been my dean since 1999," said Lois Simmons, admissions director for the School of Health Professions at CCBC-Essex. "She had the ability to figure out what we should do next and what was the next hot program. She was always planning and was an early adopter of technology as it came along."
The daughter of Harold Shepard Eustis, a Shell Oil Co. executive, and Dorothy Lucille Eustis, a homemaker, Carol Diane Eustis was born in Astoria, Ore.. Because of her father's work, she moved nine times with her family before settling in Towson.
Ms. Eustis was a 1963 graduate of Towson High School, where she was an accomplished basketball, softball and field hockey player.
She earned a bachelor's degree from the University of North Carolina, Greensboro, in 1967 and a master's degree from what is now Towson University in 1973.
Ms. Eustis began her career at Essex in 1969 as an assistant professor of health and physical education and in 1972 was named associate professor and chair of the college's health and physical education department, a position she held until 1989.
From 1989 to 1999, she was division chair of the health, physical education and dance department. In 1999, she was named academic dean of the division of Allied Health and Human Performance.
From 2001 until her death, Ms. Eustis served as dean of the School of Health Professions.
"Carol was very enthusiastic about getting grant money, which we were able to put into the department's expansion," said Ms. Simmons, who described Ms. Eustis as "very friendly, well-liked, and always with a smile on her face."
She also said that Ms. Eustis had a knack for getting people to work together.
"She was a former coach and came out of the athletic department, and was always team-oriented," said Ms. Simmons. "She was anxious that people worked together and shared resources."
In addition to her busy academic and administrative life, Ms. Eustis had been director of the college's athletic department from 1987 to 1999. She was also coach of the women's basketball team during that time.
She also coached the women's field hockey team to three National Junior College Athletic Association Field Hockey National Championships, in 1977, 1978 and 1980.
A 14-time Coach of the Year, Ms. Eustis compiled a 355-164 record in basketball and led three teams to the NJCAA women's national championship game.
Ms. Eustis outlined her coaching philosophy in a 1979 interview in The Evening Sun.
She "eschewed the win-at-any cost attitude for the aesthetics of the game," observed the newspaper.
"The one thing I hope for, whether we win or lose, is that we demonstrate we are skilled hockey players," she told the newspaper.
"We try to demonstrate the skill necessary to try and realize the visual conception I have of the game. You can play the game with skill and without skill," she said.
"It sounds funny for a coach to say winning isn't important. Yes, it is important. But I'd much prefer to see us play a well-executed game and maybe come out on the short end of the score," said Ms. Eustis.
"I played for her when I was a student at Essex, and then was her assistant basketball coach for years," said Barb L. Miller, who is director of financial aid at Stevenson University.
"Carol was a tough coach, but there was nothing we wanted to do more in this world than please her and make her proud of us. She always gave her all," said Ms. Miller.
"She saw things in you that were going to make you a better person in the future. That was her mission. It wasn't just about basketball. She cared for us off the court. It was a lifetime thing with her," said Ms. Miller.
"Next to my family, Carol was the most influential person in my life," said Ms. Miller. "I loved her."
During her coaching career, nearly 20 student-athletes were named NJCAA All-Americans.
For more than two decades, Ms. Eustis held leadership roles with the NJCAA. In 1985, she began serving as the Region 20 women's director, and in 1999 was elected vice president of the NJCCA's Women's Division, where she served two terms until her resignation in 2008.
Ms. Eustis served on the field hockey, women's soccer and softball committees and the championship events committee for 15 years.
"A friend, a mentor, a leader and a truly special person, Carol will be missed by many across the nation," Mary Ellen Leicht, executive director of the NJCAA, said in an email. "Her quick wit [and] intelligence made the NJCAA a better association for all."
"CCBC and the NJCAA lost a trailblazer of community college athletics," said Brian Farrell, current director of athletics at the college.
Ms. Eustis enjoyed golfing and raising and breeding Labrador retrievers.
"She also liked collecting watches and tennis shoes. She had 38 pairs," said her wife of two years, Linda Twenty, who had known Ms. Eustis for 25 years.
A memorial service will be held at 2 p.m. Monday in the campus auditorium at CCBC-Essex, 7201 Rossville Blvd.
In addition to her wife, Ms. Eustis is survived by a sister, Gail E. Franklin of Ackworth, Ga.; a niece; and a nephew.