A fixture the last two decades in the "back of the house," also known as the Athletics Training Room in Gersten Pavilion, has been Keith Ellison. The last 18 years of his 24 years of service at Loyola Marymount has been as the head athletic trainer and director of sports medicine for the department of athletics at LMU. In 2009, Ellison was promoted to Assistant Athletics Director for Sports Medicine.
The 2012-13 men's basketball season will be his 18th at that position.
Ellison has been in the professional field of athletic training for more than 20 years, all of them here at LMU. And he has seen a little of everything as his alma mater has grown to 21 sports and more than 450 student-athletes. His devotion to LMU is evident, as the training facilities have only been enhanced in the past 17 years under Ellison's guidance.
"LMU has given me so much in my life, I wouldn't want to be anywhere else. The University has given me so many opportunities. I've been fortunate to be here for so many years," said Ellison.
After graduating with a degree in business administration and a minor in economics from LMU in 1987, Ellison worked as an intern at LMU while completing his coursework in athletic training at UCLA. The National Athletic Trainers Association in 1994 certified him as an athletic trainer.
Ellison is responsible for all areas of athletic training for LMU's 22 varsity sports and is the head trainer for the men's basketball team. He coordinates and supervises the physical therapy for each of the student-athletes at LMU.
In addition, Ellison has been a driving force behind LMU's development of the Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training program. In its fifth year, the program has grown by the more than 20 students who work and earn credit hours in the athletic training room for the Lions. With Ellison's efforts, LMU student-athletes have more than 25 to 30 members of the athletics training staff, four of which are full-time staff members of the athletics department, assisting them in becoming champions.
"It has been very important for us in Athletics Training to develop an area that strives for the very best. That means the most advanced technology we can offer, the best care we can offer," said Ellison. "Having an injury or not feeling well is not fun in itself. We strive to make sure that everything we do makes the student-athletes feel at ease."
Ellison is a member of several committees and associations affiliated with athletic training, and has served on numerous advisory and search committees during his tenure at LMU. Ellison was appointed the athletic trainer for the Los Angeles Lakers Summer Pro League Mini-camp, the Magic Johnson Mid-Summer All-Star Charity Game, Pete Newell's Big Man Camps, and numerous other summer pro-leagues and summer camps in Southern California.
Ellison went on to earn his Masters of Education with an emphasis in Guidance Counseling in 2006.