Book Club

Welcome to the WeCOACH Book Club. As a coach, you are constantly looking to find ways to impact your teams and make discoveries from within, we understand that you may not be reading the same books as your friends outside of the world of athletics.

  • Are you a passionate reader looking to connect with like-minded coaches and initiate interactive book discussions in a virtual setting?
  • Are you seeking more accountability to actually read an entire book and stay focused on the content that can help you make improvements?
  • Are you a casual reader, with great ideas, looking to make connections with other coaches?

If you answered “YES” to any of the questions and you are seeking a community to network and meet new coaches, then this Book Club is specifically for you!

Research states that those who participate in book clubs:

  • Are more likely to commit to reading the entire book and sharing thoughts about what they have read and learned with new peers
  • Stay more informed of relevant topics within their network
  • Meet new people
  • Have a platform to share ideas and voice opinions of the book with an invested audience

Program Description

Participants commit to reading the selected book and engaging in discussions during three scheduled Video Meet-Ups during the designated term. Participants will receive questions and discussion topics to explore and reflect prior to each video meet-up, which will help guide discussions.


Book Club Eligibility and Requirements

  • Only current WeCOACH members may register and participate.  A current membership must be maintained throughout the Book Club term.
  • Participants must attend all scheduled Video Meet-Ups. Please have respect for your fellow book club members and those who were not accepted into the Book Club that would like to have the opportunity to participate.
  • Participants are willing to interact and engage in Book Club discussion at mandatory Video Meet-Ups.
  • Participants must complete a satisfaction survey at the completion of the program.

Video Meet-Up Schedule

Attendance is mandatory at one Video Meet-Up session each month.  Participant has the option to attend one of two scheduled sessions each month.  All times are 12:00 PM ET / 9:00 AM PT.

Month 1:  September 23 or 24

Month 2:  October 21 or 22

Month 3:  November 18 or 19


*** Registration Closed ***

Book Club Term:  September – November 2019

One book has been selected for the upcoming term. Two separate groups will run concurrently. The first 75 registrants will be accepted to participate on a FIRST-COME, FIRST- SERVED basis. Others will be placed on a waiting list. Registration opens September 9.


“Seven Thousand Ways To Listen” by Mark Nepo

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author, “a consummate storyteller with a rare gift for making the invisible visible” (Publishers Weekly), this beautifully written spiritual memoir explores the endless ways we can listen for life’s deepest messages.

Mark Nepo moved and inspired millions of people with his #1 New York Times bestseller The Book of Awakening, a spiritual day book. Now, in this new exploration of the human journey, Nepo inquires into the endless ways life asks us to listen. Having experienced hearing loss, Nepo affirms that listening is one of the most mysterious, luminous, and challenging art forms: “Whatever difficulty you face, there are time-tried ways you can listen your way through. Because listening is the doorway to everything that matters.” Weaving together memoir and meditation exercises, Nepo offers many ways to listen to life and live more fully. A moving exploration of self, our relationship to others, and the world around us, this remarkable guide unpacks the many ways we are called to redefine ourselves and to name what is meaningful as we face life’s challenges.


Your Moderators

WeCOACH welcomes two fun-loving, karaoke-singing, advocates of personal growth, and champions for women in sport and coaching, Marlene Bjornsrud, former Executive Director of WeCOACH and “THE REV.” Dr. Joanne Sanders to be our guest moderators for this book club term.


Marlene Bjornsrud

Marlene’s career spanned more than 40 years of leadership in women’s sports and non-profits, establishing and growing organizations. She had a wide range of experience across multiples sports and levels including coaching and athletic administration at the collegiate level, and general management at the professional level. Now retired, she remains an advocate and leader committed to using sports as a platform to make a positive difference in the world.

Marlene served as Executive Director of the Alliance of Women Coaches (now WeCOACH) from 2014 – 2016. She joined the Alliance from the Bay Area Women’s Sport Initiative (BAWSI), a nonprofit organization she co-founded in 2005 with USA soccer stars Brandi Chastain and Julie Foudy. As CEO of BAWSI, they engaged more than 8,000 women athletes in the fight against child obesity by having them inspire more than 16,000 BAWSI girls in underserved communities in the Bay Area and more than a thousand children with disabilities (“BAWSI Rollers”), to get moving in fun, active play.

Marlene’s work in helping girls and women through sport was recognized by the International Olympic Committee with its prestigious 2013 Women and Sport Award for the continent of the Americas. Marlene was a featured speaker in Doha, Qatar at the GOALS (Gathering of All Leaders in Sport) Forum with the intent of empowering individuals to create a roadmap for social improvement through sport and launch cross-border initiatives. Additionally, she was instrumental in helping launch the first ever Japanese Women Coaches Academy. Marlene has been a featured speaker at WBCA, AVCA, and NSCAA conventions, as well as many local, regional and national events.
Marlene resides in Colorado Springs, CO with her wife Jo and spends most of her days hiking the foothills of Pikes Peak.


The Rev. Dr. Joanne Sanders

The Rev. Dr. Joanne Sanders, Senior Associate Dean for Religious Life and a priest in the Episcopal Church, has been at Stanford University since 2000. She received a Master of Divinity from the Church Divinity School of the Pacific (CDSP) at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California and recently completed a Doctor of Ministry (D. Min) from Seattle University in Seattle, WA, with a concentration on interdisciplinary leadership.

Sanders professional background includes previous university experience in college admissions and intercollegiate athletics, including collegiate coaching and a Master of Science in Sports Administration. Her educational research and religious interests explore the integrated connection between religion, spirituality and sport. Sanders doctoral work features research on emerging adults and the question of meaning making through intercollegiate athletic participation. Thresholds of Meaning; Sports and Religion on Campus, explores questions of meaning through intercollegiate athletic participation using both theological and philosophical inquiry and the conditions required to consider sport as threshold, a point at which our deepest yearnings and ultimate meaning may be discovered. Rev. Sanders has presented her research at two NCAA Women Coaches Academies in Denver, CO in 2018 and 2019.

Rev. Sanders had the unique opportunity to serve on a 40-member multi-faith chaplain team at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake City, Utah. She has collaborated with colleagues across the Stanford campus in developing courses in Sports and Spirituality, The Athlete and Identity and Gender and Sports.

In addition to engaging in the care and well-being of the university community in a number of ways, Rev. Sanders preaches regularly at Stanford Memorial Church. She currently serves as the President of the Association of College and University Religious Affairs (ACURA), a national organization of professionals in higher education working to support pluralistic and inclusive endeavors in religion, spirituality and ethics in colleges and universities.