Joeleen Akin /// Associate Athletic Director, Student-Athlete Development /// Georgia Tech (DI)
Joeleen Akin, who coined the trademarked tagline “Smart Women Sweat,” boasts more than 20 years of leadership experience in college athletics.
Akin is currently the associate athletics director for student-athlete development and senior woman administrator at Georgia Tech. Other highlights of her more than two decades in athletics leadership include:
• three years as a member of Georgia Tech athletics’ executive leadership team;
• 12 years as athletics director at Agnes Scott College;
• five years as women’s basketball head coach at Agnes Scott;
• five years as commissioner of the Great South Athletic Conference;
• two years as a member of the NCAA Division III women’s basketball committee;
• two years as a member of the NCAA Division III volleyball regional advisory committee;
• years as co-chair of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s diversity and inclusion committee.
In her current role, Akin is a member of Georgia Tech athletics’ executive leadership team and serves as the administrator for the Yellow Jackets’ volleyball, softball and men’s golf programs. She also oversees Tech’s renowned Total Person Program, as well as its sports nutrition program and Letterwinners Club.
Since returning to Tech in 2016, she has helped enhance Georgia Tech’s student-athlete development initiatives through the implementation of several new programs, highlighted by Jackets Without Borders, a series of student-athlete service trips that have assisted children and families in need in Costa Rica (2017) and Puerto Rico (2018). She also chairs the student-athlete welfare committee (CARE Team).
Outside of the athletics department, Akin serves on the Georgia Tech’s Executive Advisory Committee and is a member of the Leading Women at Georgia Tech program. She also co-chairs the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association’s diversity and inclusion committee and is a certified QPR (Question, Persuade and Refer) suicide-prevention trainer.
Akin rejoined the Georgia Tech athletics administration in 2016 after 13 years at nearby Agnes Scott College. She served as Agnes Scott’s athletics director and physical education chair for 12 years (2003-15) before being promoted to associate dean for athletics and student activities in February 2015.
During her 12 years as athletics director at Agnes Scott, an NCAA Division III institution in Decatur, Ga., Akin oversaw a program that produced eight NCAA Tournament teams and a coaching staff that earned 12 different coach-of-the-year recognitions. Under her direction, Agnes Scott student-athletes maintained a 3.0 cumulative grade point average and participated extensively in on- and off-campus service projects.
Akin’s tenure at Agnes Scott was marked by innovation and vision. She created and implemented numerous student-athlete development and engagement initiatives at ASC, including a new student-athlete orientation program, Safe Zone training for student-athletes, coaches and staff and coordination of campus-wide academic resources for student-athletes.
In addition to her duties as athletics director and physical education chair, Akin was Agnes Scott’s women’s basketball coach from 2003-07 and was named the Great South Athletic Conference Coach of the Year in 2006 after engineering a turnaround that saw the program rise from among the bottom three teams in the league to the top three teams in the conference.
She also served as commissioner of the Great South from 2011-16 and was a member of the NCAA Division III women’s basketball committee and NCAA volleyball regional advisory committee from 2014-16. As commissioner of the Great South, she rebuilt a conference membership that had dwindled to four institutions back to nine, keeping the league’s NCAA affiliation intact.
Prior to her 13-year tenure at Agnes Scott, Akin spent seven years at Georgia Tech as director of women’s basketball operations (1996-98), marketing/operations manager (1998-99) and director of marketing (1999-2003).
Before arriving at Georgia Tech in 1996, she served as a sports marketing assistant at Auburn and NC State and as a member of the women’s basketball staffs at UNC Wilmington and Kansas State.
A Kansas native, Akin earned bachelor’s (1991) and master’s (1993) degrees from Kansas State.
She and her husband, Charles, have two children: Bobbie and Ryan.