Cynthia Castro enters her third season as assistant coach for the UC San Diego cross country program in 2012. She joined the Tritons in the summer of 2010 after a five-year stint as an assistant coach with the women's cross country and track and field teams at Oregon State University.
Alongside head coach Kelly Sullivan, Castro helped resurrect the running programs at OSU, which had been cut for budgetary reasons in 1988. She played an important role in recruiting a number of high caliber runners and was heavily involved in the program's daily operations and alumni/community relations efforts.
During Castro's tenure, the cross country team went from last place in the Pac-10 Conference in its first season to earning a No. 28 national ranking in just a few short years. The Beavers went on to place ninth at the 2008 NCAA West Regional Championships, the program's highest finish since the sport was reinstated.
Castro also had a hand in coaching 13 different track athletes who cracked Oregon State's all-time top-10 performance list, as well as a number of NCAA West Regional qualifiers.
Prior to her arrival at OSU, Castro served as a research study coordinator at the University of Washington and was a health services intern for the U.S. DHSS Office on Women's Health Region X based in Seattle.
Castro graduated summa cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology and Spanish from Arizona State. She competed in both cross country and track and field for the Sun Devils, helping the cross country team to a sixth place finish at the NCAA Championships in 2000 (the highest finish in school history at the time). On the track, she recorded personal bests of 2:15 in the 800, 4:34 in the 1500, and 9:46 in the 3,000.
While at ASU, Castro conducted several research projects pertaining to minority health disparities and went on to earn a master's degree in public health with an emphasis in women's health from Oregon State.
Castro and her husband David live in Rancho Penasquitos with their two children Olivia and Joaquin. David works as a post-doctoral cancer researcher with the Sanford/Burnham Institute in La Jolla.