Women Leaders in College Sports History & Past Leadership

In the midst of gender-equity conflicts in intercollegiate athletics in 1979, a group of female administrators came together to form the Council of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators (CCWAA), an organization with the goal of enhancing opportunities for women in athletics. This organization is known today as Women Leaders in College Sports.

Since its creation, the objective of the organization has not changed, but the roles, focuses, and executions have evolved with the increased exposure of women’s athletics and women leaders. In 1992, in order to better represent its diversified members, the CCWAA changed its name to the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators (NACWAA).

In response to member and industry needs, NACWAA altered its mission statement in 2013 to focus on advocating and advancing women into positions of leadership as “the nation’s premier women’s athletic leadership association.”

Another significant change came in 2017 when NACWAA changed its name to Women Leaders in College Sports to more clearly demonstrate who the organization became, what it does, and to acknowledge and celebrate the elevation of women’s roles.

Expanding from its moderate beginnings and growth along the way, Women Leaders now boasts more than 3,500 members from institutions, conferences, and affiliated organizations across the country.

No longer just a forum for female administrators to exchange ideas, Women Leaders has grown into a powerful force in college athletics. Women Leaders advocates by advancing women into influential leadership positions and providing increased leadership opportunities for women working in college sports and beyond.

Below is a list of past presidents, board of directors, and executive directors who have contributed to Women Leaders in College Sports since the beginning.

Past Presidents

Present, Lynn Holzman, NCAA
2017-2018, Julie Soriero, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2016-2017 Vicky Chun, Colgate University
2015-2016 Lynn Hickey, University of Texas, San Antonio
2014-2015 Joan McDermott, Metropolitan State University of Denver
2013-2014 Chris Plonsky, The University of Texas
2012-2013 Robin Harris, The Ivy League
2011-2012 Julie Hermann, University of Louisville
2010-2011 Susan Bassett, Carnegie Mellon
2009-2010 Carolayne Henry, Mountain West Conference
2008-2009 Barb Schroeder, Regis University
2007-2008 Bernadette McGlade, Atlantic-10 Conference
2006-2007 Joan Cronan, University of Tennessee
2005-2006 Jean Lenti Ponsetto, DePaul University
2004-2005 Alfreeda Goff, Horizon League
2003-2004 Pam Gill Fisher, University of California-Davis
2002-2003 M. Dianne Murphy, University of Denver
2001-2002 Peg Bradley-Doppes, University of North Carolina at Wilmington
2000-2001 Judy Sweet, NCAA
1999-2000 Bridget Belgiovine, NCAA
1998-1999 Karol Kahrs, University of Illinois
1997-1998 Sharon E. Taylor, Lock Haven University
1996-1997 Betsy Alden, San Francisco State University/Ithaca College
1995-1996 Dee Todd, Atlantic Coast Conference
1994-1995 Cary Groth, Northern Illinois University
1993-1994 Marilyn McNeil, Cal Poly San Luis Obispo/Monmouth University
1992-1993 Marcia Saneholtz, Washington State University
1991-1992 Chris Voelz, University of Minnesota
1989-1991 Kaye Hart, Utah State University/Austin Peay State University (1943-2015)
1987-1989 Christine Grant, University of Iowa
1983-1987 Kay Don, Texas A&M/Cal State University-Dominguez Hills
1980-1982 Barbara Hedges, University of Southern California/University of Washington

Board of Directors

2018-2021 Val Ackerman, Big East Conference
2018-2022 Joeleen Akin, Georgia Tech
2018-2022 Kelley Kish, Lake Erie College
2018-2022 Adrianne Swinney, University of Connecticut
2017-2019 Jennifer Cohen, University of Washington
2017-2021 Tamica Smith Jones, University of California Riverside  
2017-2021 Tonia Walker, Winston-Salem State University 
2017-2021 Natalie Winkelfoos, Oberlin College 
2016-2020 Lori Hendricks, Mount Holyoke College
2016-2020 Lindsay Reeves, University of North Georgia
2016-2020 Jennifer Strawley, University of Miami
2015-2019 Julie Cromer Peoples, University of Arkansas
2015-2019 Pennie Parker, Rollins College
2015-2019 Miechelle Willis, Ohio State University
2014-2018 Lisa Campos, Northern Arizona University
2014-2018 Heather Lyke, Eastern Michigan University
2014-2018 Meg Stevens, Averett University
2013-2017 Missy Conboy, University of Notre Dame
2013-2017 Jacqie McWilliams, Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association
2013-2017 Julie Ruppert, Northeast-10 Conference
2012-2016 Grace Calhoun, University of Pennsylvania
2012-2016 Amy Huchthausen, America East Conference
2014-2016 Julie Muller, North Atlantic Conference
2012-2016 Cathie Schweitzer, Springfield College
2011-2015 Sandy Hatfield Clubb, Drake University
2011-2015 Lori Mazza, University of Pittsburgh, Bradford
2011-2015 Erin McDermott, University of Chicago
2011-2015 Janet Judge, Sports Law Associates LLC
2010-2014 Anucha Browne, NCAA
2010-2014 Kim Chandler, Macalester College
2010-2014 Vicky Chun, Colgate University
2009-2013 Debby DeAngelis, Cal State-East Bay
2009-2013 Joan McDermott, Metropolitan State University of Denver
2009-2013 Jane Miller, University of Virginia
2010-2012 Debbie Corum, University of Connecticut
2008-2012 Barbara Osborne, University of North Carolina
2008-2012 Carolyn Schlie Femovich, Patriot League
2008-2012 Faith Shearer, Elon University
2007-2011 Darlene Bailey, William Jewell College
2007-2011 Lynn Holzman, NCAA
2007-2011 Germaine McAuley, Spelman College
2006-2010 Julie Hermann, University of Louisville
2006-2010 Kate Hickey, Rutgers University
2006-2010 Julie Soriero, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
2008-2009 Tracey Ranieri, State University of New York at Oneonta
2008-2009 Roberta Page, Shippensburg University
2006-2009 Mary McElroy, Georgia State
2005-2008 Joan Cronan, University of Tennessee
2004-2008 Tina Cheatham, Southland Conference
2004-2008 Christine “Chris” Hoyles, Pacific-10 Conference
2004-2008 Roxanne Levenson, Pepperdine University
2003-2007 Monique A.J. Morgan, Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association
2003-2007 Susan Bassett, Carnegie Mellon University
2003-2007 Carol Reep, NCAA
2002-2006 Kathy Turpin, Barry University
2002-2006 Laurie Turner, University of California-San Diego
2002-2006 Brenda Weare, Conference USA
2001-2005 Jane Meyer, University of Iowa
2001-2005 Nona Richardson, Ball State University
2001-2005 Joyce Wong, Eastern Connecticut State University
2000-2004 Dru Hancock, Big Twelve Conference
2000-2004 Carolayne Henry, Mountain West Conference
2000-2004 Barbara Schroeder, Regis College
1999-2003 Lauren Anderson, University of Rhode Island
1999-2003 Jane Meier, Northern Kentucky University
1999-2003 Connee Zotos, Drew University
1998-2002 Barbara Bolich, Domincan University
1998-2002 Patty Viverito, Missouri Valley Conference
1998-2002 Athena Yiamouyiannis, NCAA
1997-2001 Rita Castagna, Assumption College
1997-2001 Karin Lee, University of Alabama
1997-2001 Jean Lenti, Ponsetto DePaul University
1996-2000 Carolyn Campbell-McGovern, Ivy League
1996-2000 M. Dianne Murphy, University of Denver
1996-2000 Laurie Priest, Mount Holyoke College
1998-1999 Jane Meyer, University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse
1997-1999 Denise O’Grady, University of Northern Colorado
1995-1999 Jo Ann Harper, Dartmouth College
1995-1996 Vivian Fuller, Northern Illinois University
1995-1999 Jill DeMichele, Arizona State University
1995-1999 Sandy Barbour, Tulane University
1994-1998 Bridget Belgiovine, University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse
1996-1998 Rosalyn Dunlap, University of Denver
1994-1998 Peg Wynkoop, Wright State University
1994-1998 Pam Gill-Fisher, University of California-Davis
1994-1997 Peggy Bradley-Doppes, University of Michigan
1993-1996 Debbie Chin, University of New Haven
1993-1996 Betsy Alden, San Francisco State University
1993-1996 Angela Taylor, University of Nevada
1994-1995 Dee Todd, Atlantic Coast Conference
1992-1995 Regina Sullivan, University of San Diego
1992-1995 Judy Kruckman WWIAC
1992-1996 Cary Groth, Northern Illinois University
1991-1994 Margie McDonald, Western Athletic Conference
1992-1995 Joan Maser, Carnegie-Mellon University
1990-1994 Lynn Dorn, North Dakota State University
1988-1993 Chris Voelz, University of Minnesota
1991-1994 Averill Haines, Boston University
1990-1995 Marilyn McNeil, Monmouth University
1991-1997 Linda Hackett, Bryant College
1988-1994 Mary Jo Warner, George Washington University
1989-1992 Jo Kuhn, Texas Women’s University
1981-1983 Libby Roqumore, Georgia State University
1980-1987 Kay Don, Texas A&M University
1988-1991 Bonnie Morrow, NAIA
1988-1991 Eleanor Lemaire, University of Rhode Island
1988-1991 Alfreeda Goff, Virginia Commonwealth University
1987-1990 Marcia Saneholtz, Washington State University
1987-1994 Linda Moulton, Clark University
1987-1990 Ann Marie Lawler, University of Florida
1987-1990 Kaye Hart, Utah State University
1986-1987 Pamela Walker, University of Redlands
1986-1989 Martha Mullins, Eastern Kentucky University
1986-1989 Karen Fey, New Mexico State University
1986-1989 Kathy Clark, University of Idaho
1985-1988 Sharon Taylor, Lock Haven University
1985-1988 Judy Sweet, University of California-San Diego
1985-1991 Jeanne Rowlands, Northeastern University
1985-1988 Sharon Holmberg, Big Sky Conference
1984-1987 Christine Grant, University of Iowa
1984-1985 Barbara Palmer, Florida State University
1984-1987 Patty Viverito, Gateway Conference
1984-1987 Mary Jo Wynn, Southwest Missouri State University
1983-1986 Mary Ellen Cloninger, Bowling Green State University
1983-1986 Jane Betts, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1983-1986 Mona Plummer, Arizona State University
1983-1986 Carole Huston, Bowling Green State University
1983-1986 Phyllis Howlett, Big Ten Conference
1983-1986 Barbara Hollmann, University of Montana
1979-1983 Pam Strathairn, Stanford University
1979-1984 Mary Roby, University of Arizona
1979-1983 *Judith Holland, University of California-Los Angeles
1979-1983 Mary Alice Hill, San Diego State University
1979-1985 *Barbara Hedges, University of Southern California
1979-1980 Sue Garrison, University of Houston
1979-1984 Linda Estes, University of New Mexico
1979-1985 Della Durant, Penn State University
1979-1984 June Davis, University of Nebraska
1979-1983 Jean Cerra, University of Missouri
1979-1984 Phyllis Bailey, Ohio State University

*NACWAA Founding Member

Executive Directors/CEO

2010-Present Patti Phillips
1996-2009 Jennifer Alley
1994-1996 Jane Betts