Because of Title IX: Kiki Baker Barnes

Athletic Director, Dillard University

Finish this sentence: “Because of Title IX...”

I am a WOMAN LEADER in college sports.

How have the athletic and academic opportunities afforded to you because of Title IX impacted your life? Can you imagine your life without them?

My career in sports was made possible by scholarship opportunities that were made mandatory for women participating in college sports. Not only did I have the opportunity to play college sports, but I also began my career as a graduate assistant basketball coach and received a scholarship to that, as well. Can I imagine my life without them? Absolutely not.

Tell us about a woman who championed you in pursuing your goals. How did her influence inspire or affect you and your career?

My mother has always been my biggest champion. Although she knew very little about sports, she strongly encouraged my participation in every endeavor I have pursued whether it was cross country, cheerleading, track, or basketball. She influenced me by helping me to develop a strong foundation in my faith. This foundation is where I continually draw strength from to face life's challenges—especially assuming a leadership position in intercollegiate sports. My mother grew up in a time when women weren't allowed to preach or pastor. When she finally accepted her calling some years back, she inspired me to continue to live by faith and not fear of walking in my purpose. I am so very proud to call her Rev. Linda Baker.

How are you continuing to champion the next generation of women and girls in sports, and raise awareness on the importance Title IX?

I am championing the next generation of women and girls in sport by being excellent in my role as a top administrator in the industry and being accessible through mentoring opportunities. I make it my business to be as responsive as possible when young ladies and men reach out to me with questions about how to navigate this profession.

If you could send an empowering tweet to every woman and girl across the country, what would you send?

"Adversity is the initiation to success" #kikiskeys

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