For the majority of people, a fully charged cell phone is important for personal appointments and communication. In fact, many use 12-watt iPad chargers to expedite the charge of their iPhones. But Kat Vosters needs not one, but two fully charged phones to do her job.
Vosters is the University of Wisconsin men’s basketball operations director, and one of very few women to hold the position nationwide.
At a young 26 years old, Vosters is a unique addition to the men’s basketball program. She was first hired by former head coach Bo Ryan, and was kept on the team when Greg Gard took over. When asked to describe her, Gard said that she was “essential.”
“We just looked for the best person at the position and she’s just been outstanding,” said Gard. “Terrifically organized, very on time, great with handling the tasks, great with travel. She’s great with our players – they respect her…She’s a rock star in that and we’re fortunate to have her.”
Vosters has really climbed the ladder to her current position. She started as student manager when she was attending the university herself as a communications and journalism major. From there she was promoted to program assistant, and then to her current role, where she sits right next to the coaches on the Wisconsin Badgers’ bench.
From the bench, she tracks the opposing team’s possessions, rebounds, timeouts, and second-chance shots. Away from the court, she’s responsible for much more, including the team’s travel accommodations and scheduling. On any given week during the season, Vosters has to transport 30 to 40 people to and from their destination. Sometimes she does it twice a week. She also manages the team’s multi-million dollar budget.
“And I wasn’t a math major,” Vosters laughed. “Year one I was very nervous. But it’s simple math. We know what we’re going to spend each year, we don’t ask for a lot, out of the needs. The big costs are travel expenses. We fly private jets because we need our guys to be in school. We can’t work with delays.”
But with all these tasks, her schedule is pretty hectic. That’s why she needs two cell phones: one for her main communication and one exclusively to manage Coach Gard’s schedule. But no matter what’s on her plate, she always seems to remain calm.
“If I lose my cool other people will lose their cool,” said Vosters. “I need to be that stable piece for our coaches to look to.”
Vosters does admit that being a woman working in men’s basketball does have its challenges. Vosters is engaged, and says that she may have to work out some work things if she ever wanted to start a family.
But as of right now, Vosters isn’t concerned. Her biggest priority is managing the 14th-ranked Badgers, and helping the continue their winning streak.
The Wisconsin Badgers are 10-2 and will face Florida AandM at home on December 23.