Kim Elders is in his 22nd season at the helm of the Cornerstone University Men's Basketball program and boasts an overall record of 528-212. Elders is in illustrious company as he ranks seventh for most victories (528) among active NAIA DII coaches and his .714 winning percentage is also the fourth highest amongst the same elite group of coaches.
Since taking over the program in 1993, Elders’ teams have averaged 25 victories per season. Six of his teams have recorded 30+ victories, including his 1999 National Championship team (37-3) and his 2011 National Championship team (34-4). Elders has also guided his teams to three Fab Four’s (’01, ’02 & ’03) and three Elite 8’s (’05, ’07 & ’10) and his 27 national tournament victories ranks third all-time in the NAIA DII.
Elders has been one of the most successful coaches in the history of the Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference. Since the inception of the WHAC in 1992-93, Elders’ teams have captured seven regular season titles (’96, ’99, ’05, ’07, ’10, ’11 and ‘14). His 1999 squad is still the only team to finish the conference with an undefeated record posting a 14-0 mark while his 2013-14 squad set a conference record with 20 victories in league play.
Elders has also been one of the most successful coaches in WHAC post-season play. He has guided his teams to eight conference tournament championships (’99, ’01, ’02, ’04, ’06, ’10, ’11 and ‘14) and from 1999-2011, Elders led CU to an unprecedented 13 consecutive WHAC Conference Tournament title games.
Elders has garnered several individual coaches awards during his spectacular career. He has been named WHAC Coach of the Year on six different occasions (’96, ’99,’05, ’10, ’11, ‘14). Twice he has been named NAIA National Coach of the Year with the first one coming in 1999 following CU’s first National Championship and second after the 2011 National Championship. In ’99, Elders was also named the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) National Coach of the Year and also earned Basketball Coaches Association of Michigan (BCAM) Coach of the Year honors that same season. In 1996, when Cornerstone was still a member of the National Christian College Athletic Association, Elders was selected as the NCCAA National Coach of the Year.
On six different occasions, Elders has taken his teams on overseas’ missions’ trips. The first one was to the Philippines in 1998. Two years later, Elders led his team to Singapore. In the summers of 2003 and 2005, his teams went back to the Philippines. On the last two trips (2010 & 2013), the Golden Eagles were involved in church construction in the Dominican Republic.
Elders began his coaching career in 1981 at Grand Rapids Baptist Academy, leading the boys’ JV team to a 70-29 record in five years. From 1986-1989, Elders was at Freedom Baptist Academy in Hudsonville, MI. There he served as the school’s first Athletic Director and also coached the boys’ varsity basketball team.
Arriving at Cornerstone in 1990, Elders responsibilities included Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach and Head Baseball Coach. From 1993-95, Elders served as Interim Athletic Director for Cornerstone and was named NAIA District 23 Athletic Director of the Year in 1993-94.
Elders is a 1977 graduate of Grand Valley State University where he earned a B.S. degree in Physical Education. He received his M.A. in Athletic Administration in 1993 from Western Michigan University.
In addition to his Men’s Basketball Head Coaching position at CU, Elders’ also serves as Associate Athletic Director and teaches classes in the Kinesiology Department.
Elders resides with his wife Holly in East Grand Rapids. He has four stepchildren: Nic, Zac, Cam and Missy.