Norfolk State hires former Olympian Yvette Lewis

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Yvette Lewis of the United States reacts after crossing the finish line to win the Women's 100m Hurdles during the Seiko Golden Grand Prix Kawasaki at Todoroki Stadium on May 6, 2012 in Kawasaki, Japan.  (Photo by Kiyoshi Ota/Getty Images)

Yvette Lewis of the United States reacts after crossing the finish line to win the Women’s 100m Hurdles during the Seiko Golden Grand Prix Kawasaki at Todoroki Stadium on May 6, 2012 in Kawasaki, Japan. (Photo by Kiyoshi Ota/Getty Images)

NORFOLK, Va. – Norfolk State University director of track and field programs Kenneth Giles announced Tuesday that former Olympian and local track and field legend Yvette Lewis has been hired as an assistant coach for the Spartans.

Lewis will primarily work with the hurdlers, jumpers and sprinters on the Spartan women’s track and field team.

“Yvette has a winning pedigree in her. She’s won everywhere she’s been, from high school to the professional level,” Giles said. “I think that she’ll provide a lot of experience and know-how to our women’s program. We feel we hit a grand slam with this hire.”

Panamanian Yvette Lewis celebrates after winning the gold medal in the women's 110M hurdles final during the X South American Games (Odesur) in Santiago, on March 14,2014.   AFP PHOTO / Claudio REYES        (Photo credit should read Claudio Reyes/AFP/Getty Images)

Panamanian Yvette Lewis celebrates after winning the gold medal in the women’s 110M hurdles final during the X South American Games (Odesur) in Santiago, on March 14,2014. AFP PHOTO / Claudio REYES (Photo credit should read Claudio Reyes/AFP/Getty Images)

A two-time NCAA national champion and 2016 Olympian, Lewis spent the last four years as an assistant track and field coach at her alma mater, Hampton University. Lewis’ main area of emphasis was Hampton’s hurdlers, jumpers and multi-event athletes while also serving as the team’s strength and conditioning coordinator. Lewis helped the Hampton women win a total of six MEAC indoor and outdoor titles while the Pirate men won two.

Lewis’ stint at Hampton coincided with the final years of her own successful track career. Lewis competed primarily in the 100-meter hurdles as a professional. Her personal-best time was 12.76 seconds, which she clocked in 2011 – the same year she won a gold medal representing the USA at the Pan American Games. Later in her career, Lewis represented Panama, qualifying for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Brazil.

Lewis won NCAA Division I national titles during the 2006 indoor season and 2007 outdoor season in the triple jump while at Hampton. In all, she was a six-time All-American in the triple jump and 100-meter hurdles in a two-year span for the Pirates. She also won six Most Outstanding Performer Awards for scoring the most points at MEAC indoor and outdoor championship meets.

Yvette Lewis of the United States smiles after winning the Women's 100m Hurdles during the Seiko Golden Grand Prix Kawasaki at Todoroki Stadium on May 6, 2012 in Kawasaki, Japan. (Photo by Kiyoshi Ota/Getty Images)

Yvette Lewis of the United States smiles after winning the Women’s 100m Hurdles during the Seiko Golden Grand Prix Kawasaki at Todoroki Stadium on May 6, 2012 in Kawasaki, Japan. (Photo by Kiyoshi Ota/Getty Images)

Lewis was born in Germany but raised in Newport News, Va. She attended both Denbigh and Menchville high schools. She was named the 11th-greatest athlete in the history of the Daily Press newspaper, and once won a state indoor high school championship for Menchville by outscoring every other team at the meet by herself.