Vickie Johnson has been hired as the next head coach of the Dallas Wings, president and CEO Greg Bibb announced over Zoom on Wednesday.
Johnson, who played in the WNBA for 13 years, is now the only current Black female head coach in the league.
“I take great pride in that,” Johnson said. “I want to thank the Dallas Wings for giving me an opportunity to present myself as a Black woman.”
“I started in the league in ‘97,” she added. “I have been where these players have gone and where they’re trying to go.”
“Ensuring women who have worn a WNBA jersey have opportunities to lead WNBA teams is a focus in our league,” Bibb said.
Johnson was the head coach of the San Antonio Stars for one season (2017) and has been an assistant coach for a total of nine seasons, all with the same franchise (the current Las Vegas Aces and former San Antonio Stars). Johnson spent six seasons in San Antonio and the last three working under head coach Bill Laimbeer in Las Vegas.
The Aces advanced to the WNBA Semifinals in 2019 and the Finals in 2020.
Bibb offered the following about the hiring process:
Over the course of the past few months, we narrowed our search from one that was broad and far-reaching to one that focused on a group of finalists, who were all impressive in their own way. However, it became clear to us quite quickly Vickie was the right person to lead to our team at this time. ... As an original member of the WNBA, a two time All-Star, a respected longtime assistant coach who has served under some of the game’s most successful head coaches and an individual who is proud to call north Texas home, Vickie Johnson met or exceeded all the criteria we were looking for in our head coach.
“I didn't just want to coach any team,” Johnson said. “I live in Dallas. I’ve been here since 2004. ... These young (Dallas) players have accomplished a lot of things in a short period of time and I just want them to continue to grow as people and players.”
As a WNBA player, Johnson spent nine seasons with the New York Liberty and four in San Antonio, when the team was called the Silver Stars.
Brian Agler was the head coach of the Wings in 2019 and 2020 and the team missed the playoffs both seasons.