WCA-51 Faculty

Marlene Bjornsrud, Academy Facilitator

marlene.bjornsrud@gmail.com

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.

Betsy Butterick, The Coaches’ Coach and Communications Specialist

betsy.butterick@gmail.com

Betsy is a 2013 NCAA WCA graduate (Class 29)

As a former coach with experience in DI, DII, DIII, and the WNBA Betsy utilizes her unique background with individuals ready to improve and teams of all kinds – from the locker room to the boardroom. As “The Coaches’ Coach” she meets coaches where they are and supports the growth that they’re looking to make. As a Communication Specialist, Betsy helps teams improve communication effectiveness while working collaboratively to create positive change at all levels of team. Professional, playful, and with a talent for people-centric design, Betsy offers a personal and experiential approach towards learning and development. A life-long athlete, Betsy grew up playing all sports and was a competitive basketball player (and an awful golfer) at the collegiate level. She now spends her time in Colorado Springs with her wife and daughter cycling, hiking, exploring, practicing yoga, chasing sunsets and in constant pursuit of the perfect breakfast burrito.

Nevin Caple, Founder and Principal Consultant, Return On Inclusion (ROI)

nevin@roinclusion.com

Nevin Caple is a social entrepreneur, speaker, educator, and consultant on diversity, inclusion and belonging in college athletics and professional sports. Her teaching philosophy is centered on trust and respect, taking a holistic and human-centered approach to education. Nevin is the founder of Return On Inclusion, a sport-specific online learning platform dedicated to developing inclusive leaders in high school and college athletics, and professional sports. The National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA) recently partnered with and endorsed ROI for department-wide use. Nevin sits on the Board of Directors at Stonewall Foundation in New York City and the National Center for Lesbian Rights Leadership Council. She is the Diversity & Inclusion Consultant for the CIAA Conference, the nation’s oldest Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) athletic conference. Most recently, Nevin developed the NCAA DIII ONETEAM Facilitator Training with Pat Griffin. She also co-founded LGBT SportSafe, an advocacy organization dedicated to advancing LGBTQ+ inclusion in athletics. Nevin resides in Brooklyn, New York with her wife.

Abigail Eiler, LMSW, MSW, Clinical Asst Professor of Social Work, Chief Diversity Officer, Asst. Athletic Director and Director of Athletic Counseling, University of Michigan

rowea@umich.edu

Abigail Eiler is a licensed clinical social worker and educator with more than 15 years of experience working in tribal and non-tribal communities across the country and in Canada. Eiler is a Clinical Asst. Professor of Social Work at the University of Michigan, the Director of Undergraduate Minor Programs, as well as the Chief Diversity Officer, Asst. AD and Director of Athletic Counseling & High Performance for Michigan Athletics.

As a former Michigan Student-Athlete, Professor Eiler understands both the joys and challenges that it takes to perform at an elite level in the classroom and in sport. She utilizes evidence-based practice modalities and practice-based evidence to help our athletes achieve their mental health and performance-related goals. She deeply values teaching about social justice and implementing its principles into her clinical practice. Professor Eiler utilizes an anti-racist framework and makes intentional strides to address Privilege, Oppression, Diversity and Social Justice (PODS) theories, research, and practice central to her work.

Eiler is the former President of the National Association of Social Workers – Michigan Chapter Board of Directors. She is the Chair of the Big Ten’s Mental Health & Wellness Cabinet, a member of the Big Ten Equality Coalition and was recently selected to serve on the Big Ten’s Executive Medical Committee.

Lindsay Gottlieb, Head Coach, Basketball, University of Southern California

Cleveland Cavaliers assistant coach Lindsay Gottlieb, who in her eight seasons at California led the Golden Bear women to seven NCAA appearances with a trip to the Final Four, was named the USC women’s basketball head coach on May 10, 2021 by Trojan athletic director Mike Bohn.

Gottlieb, 43, became just the seventh female NBA assistant when she was hired by the Cavs in June of 2019 and the first NCAA women’s head coach to be hired by an NBA team. Cavalier players praised her knowledge of the game, leadership and communication skills.

Gottlieb spent eight seasons (2012-19) as the head coach at Cal, posting a 179-89 (.668) overall record and advancing to the NCAA tourney all but once. Seven of her teams won at least 20 games, including the 2013 squad that went 32-4 (a school record for wins) and made it to the program’s first-ever NCAA Final Four. She was the 2013 Pac-12 Coach of the Year and a Naismith National Coach of the Year finalist and was just the seventh NCAA women’s coach since 1990 to reach the Final Four in the first two seasons of being hired.

Her 179 overall victories are the second-most in Cal history. Her teams finished in the top half of the Pac-12 standings six times, including tied for the regular season title in 2013 (a program first) at 17-1 and second twice. Her Golden Bear players were named All-Americans 10 times and six were WNBA Draft selections.

She made her mark immediately at Cal, taking a senior-less team in 2012 to the second round of the NCAAs with a 25-10 overall record and a second place Pac-12 finish. Her 2013 Final Four team snapped Stanford’s 81-game conference winning streak. The Golden Bears were 22-10 in 2014 (second in Pac-12) and 24-10 in 2015 (third in Pac-12), advancing to the NCAA second round both seasons. After dipping to 15-17 in 2016, Cal rebounded with a 20-14 season in 2017 and got to the NCAA second round. Her final two Golden Bear squads were 21-11 in 2018 (NCAA first round) and 20-13 in 2019 (NCAA second round).

Gottlieb was an assistant at Cal for two seasons (2006-07) and then the Golden Bears’ associate head coach in 2008. The Golden Bears had their first winning season in 13 years in 2006 and played in the NCAAs each season. She worked primarily with the post players, with Ashley Walker and Devanei Hampton both becoming All-Americans (Hampton was Cal’s first Pac-10 Player of the Year in 2006 and Walker was the program’s first WNBA draftee when she went in the 2009 first round).

Gottlieb then became the head coach at UC Santa Barbara for three years (2009-11), where she posted a 56-39 (.589) record and led the team to trips to the NCAA (2009) and WNIT (2011) tourneys. She won 75 percent of her Big West games (36-12), captured Big West regular season championships in 2009 and 2011 and the Big West tournament crown in 2009, and was named the 2009 Big West Coach of the Year when UCSB was 22-10 overall and 15-1 in league play. She was the first coach in school history to win 20 games in her debut season. The Gauchos went 15-17 in 2010 and 19-12 in 2011 (falling in WNIT play to USC).

She also was an assistant at Syracuse (2000-01), New Hampshire (2002) and Richmond (2003-05). The Spiders won at least 20 games all three seasons and earned postseason berths in the 2003 and 2004 WNIT and 2005 NCAA tourneys.

Gottlieb played basketball at Brown, serving in the unique role of player and student assistant coach in her 1999 senior season.

She earned her bachelor’s degree in political science from Brown in 1999 and has a master’s degree in philosophy of education from Syracuse.

She prepped at Scarsdale (N.Y.) High. She was sidelined her senior year with a knee injury, which led her to consider a coaching career.

She and her husband, Patrick, have a son, Jordan and a daughter on the way.

Charmelle Green, Deputy Athletics Director/Chief Operating Officer, University of Utah

cgreen@huntsman.utah.edu

Charmelle Green, a former Utah Softball All-American and member of the Utah Athletics Hall of Fame, returned to her alma mater as Deputy Athletics Director for Internal Operations and Chief Operating Officer on March 1, 2021. A veteran of more than 20 years in intercollegiate athletics administration and coaching, Green had spent the previous 10 years at Penn State, most recently serving as Senior Associate A.D. for Student-Athlete Performance, Health and Welfare, and Senior Woman Administrator.

In Green’s role at Penn State she served as sport supervisor for women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s cross country and track & field, softball, and ability athletics, as well as the management, supervision, and evaluation of Intercollegiate Athletics Sport Performance unit, including medical services, athletic training, strength & conditioning, performance nutrition, performance psychology, and applied health and performance science. She also oversaw the Intercollegiate Athletics Student Welfare and Development unit, which develops and implements life skills programs, and resources for student-athletes, and served as intercollegiate athletics liaison to Counseling and Psychological Services.

Green served on numerous department and university-wide committees in her 10 years at Penn State, which began in 2011 as Associate Athletic Director and Senior Woman Administrator. Committees included the search committee for Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Sandy Barbour, search committee for football head coaches Bill O’Brien and James Franklin, the University search committee for Vice President and General Counsel, the University Policy Review Committee, the University Employee Leadership Steering Committee, the University’s Employee Education Initiative Team, the University Response Coordination Committee, and Faculty Senate’s Intercollegiate Athletics Committee. Green also served as Penn State’s Deputy Title IX Coordinator.

Green previously spent 10 years at the University of Notre Dame, with her final role being head of the Office of Student-Athlete Welfare & Development and the sport administrator for women’s swimming & diving. During Green’s six years in Notre Dame’s athletics administration, she oversaw the student development program, with the mission of providing a balanced Notre Dame experience for student-athletes by focusing on five key areas: academic excellence, athletic success, career preparation, community involvement and personal development.

Prior to joining athletic administration at Notre Dame, Green was an assistant softball coach for the Fighting Irish from 2001-05. During her tenure on the coaching staff, the Irish were selected for the NCAA Tournament four times and won four Big East Conference regular season championships.

Green’s collegiate coaching career began as a volunteer assistant at Utah in 1996 before moving on to full-time assistant coaching positions at Colorado State (1999) and Syracuse (2000-01), and ultimately Notre Dame.

 

After an All-America softball career at Utah, Green played one season of softball in New Zealand and a season in the newly formed National Fastpitch Association following graduation. She returned to Salt Lake City and coordinated youth programs for Salt Lake County Parks and Recreation from 1995-98 while also coaching softball at West High as head coach and as a volunteer assistant at Utah. During that time, Green also was an integral part of developing an advisory board for the development of an inner-city school for the arts.

A first-team All-American in 1990 and second-team choice in ’91, Green also was named the 1991 Western Athletic Conference Player of the Year and winner of the Occie Evans Award, honoring the outstanding senior woman athlete in team sports at the U. She also was Sportswoman of the Year in Softball in the state of Utah after leading the Utes to the College World Series in her highly-decorated senior year, when current Utah Softball head coach Amy Hogue was a freshman.

Green, who helped lead two conference championship teams and was a captain in 1991, was inducted into Utah’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 2001. She left Utah with 13 school records, including seven all-time career standards. Among those she was the all-time leader in batting average (.341), hits (232), runs (112) and stolen bases (55), and still ranks fifth in stolen bases and triples (12). Green is also enshrined in the State of Utah’s Softball Hall of Fame as well as the Hall of Fame at Mt. Miguel High School in Spring Valley, Calif.

A 1991 Utah graduate with a degree in mass communications/public relations, Green earned a master’s degree in secondary education in 2003 from IU South Bend. She is married to Dr. Matthew E. Mooney who will join the University as the Director for Digital Learning Services in June 2021.

Lesley Irvine, Vice President/Director of Athletics, Colorado College

lirvine@coloradocollege.edu

Lesley is a 2009 NCAA WCA graduate (Class #17).

Lesley Irvine began her tenure as Vice President and Director of Athletics at Colorado College on June 1, 2019. In her role Irvine serves on the President’s cabinet and oversees Athletics and Recreation within the Division. Since Irvine’s arrival CC Athletics has experienced unprecedented success and several landmark moments that will be the foundation of the department’s championship culture in the years to come.
 
During the unprecedented 2020-21 campaign, Irvine guided the department through a global pandemic while continuing to provide opportunities to CC’s student-athletes to practice and compete throughout the entire year. With 16 of the school’s 17 intercollegiate sports taking place in the spring of ‘21, Irvine witnessed outstanding performances each weekend, highlighted by the volleyball team finishing the season ranked No. 1 in the country with a perfect 17-0 record and its third SCAC title in four years.
 
Meanwhile, the men’s lacrosse team won the SCAC championships and earned a trip to the Division III Elite Eight for the first time in school history before falling to eventual national champion RIT in the quarterfinals, while the men’s cross country and women’s lacrosse teams also captured SCAC team titles last spring.
 
Josh Fry became just the second male in SCAC history to earn cross country Runner of the Year and track Athlete of the Year honors in the same season. After winning the league’s cross country individual title in February, he captured the 800- and 1,500-meter titles at the SCAC Track Championships en route to qualifying for both events at the NCAA Division III Championships, the first CC athlete to qualify for the national meet in two events.
 
Five other student-athletes were named the top player in the SCAC in their respective sports, including McKenzee Gertz (women’s basketball), Georgia Mullins (volleyball), Anders Erickson (men’s lacrosse; offensive), Billy Hutchison (men’s lacrosse; co-defensive) and Bella Beattie (women’s lacrosse; offensive).
 
In January of 2021, Irvine launched the record-breaking Tiger ExCCellence campaign, a championship culture fundraising initiative celebrating the history of Colorado College athletics and charting a course for its ambitious future. During it’s inaugural year, Tiger ExCCellence set a historic high of annual fundraised dollars for the athletic department.
 
Irvine has provided key leadership in the planning, construction and operation of the brand new Ed Robson Arena, scheduled to open in October of 2021. The state-of-the-art 3,400-plus seat facility will provide the Colorado College hockey team an on-campus home for the first time in program history and also serves as one of the City for Champions projects. In conjunction with the planning for the building Irvine also oversaw the planning, unveiling and implementation of a logo refresh that was unveiled in February 2020.
 
Irvine is also passionately committed to service and economic development within the city of Colorado Springs. She currently sits on the board for the Colorado Springs Sports Corporation, the Olympic City USA Task Force and the Colorado Springs Sports Authority. Irvine was also elected by her peers to the Women Leaders in College Sports Board of Directors in 2020, serving as the Division III representative and is a founding board member of the WeCoach organization. Through Irvine’s conference work she also serves on the Athletic Director Council for the SCAC and NCHC as well as on the NCHC Student-Athlete Well Being Task Force.

During Irvine’s first fall in Colorado Springs, the Tigers ranked in the top 10 percent nationally in the 2019 Division III Learfield IMG Directors’ Cup Standings, Colorado College’s highest ranking ever. The men’s soccer team, which won its first-ever Southern Collegiate Athletic Conference regular-season championship, and volleyball team earned berths in their respective NCAA Championships.
 
The men’s and women’s cross country teams swept the SCAC championships as a first-time host, and the men’s squad went on to place fifth at the Division III West Region meet.
 
Under Irvine’s direction, Colorado College transformed both Washburn and Stewart Fields by installing the Greensport Synthetic Turf System. In addition, a lighting system was added to Stewart which allowed both soccer teams to play night games for the first time on CC’s historic soccer pitch.
 
Irvine’s arrival coincided with the department’s most successful academic performance in history, with a record 256 Division III student-athletes earning a spot on the SCAC Honor Roll and the women’s soccer team matching its previous high of 17 players earning a place on the Academic All-Mountain West Team. CC athletes combined for a 3.42 grade-point average during the 2019-20 academic year, the highest in the last decade.
 
Prior to joining Colorado College, Irvine was Director of Athletics and Recreation and Chair of Physical Education at Pomona and Pitzer Colleges. At Pomona-Pitzer, Irvine managed 21 intercollegiate athletics teams, the Pomona physical education curriculum, faculty/staff fitness and wellness programs, and club, intramural, and recreation programs. She led the department to 15 Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championships and its first-ever SCIAC Men’s All-Sports Trophy in 2018.
 
Irvine’s leadership also pointed to  successful fundraising as she helped raise two lead gifts totaling $20 million for a new campus athletics and recreation building at Pomona, and created an athletics annual fund that raised $1.25 million in under 3 years.
 
Before Pomona-Pitzer, Irvine was the senior associate athletic director and senior woman administrator at Bowling Green State University from 2010-15.
 
From 2001-2010, she was the field hockey head coach at Stanford University, leading the Cardinal to three consecutive Northern Pacific Conference championships. She is a two-time conference Coach of the Year recipient, and led her team to program highs in national ranking, wins, goals, assists, and points in 2009.
 
Irvine served as chair of the SCIAC’s Athletic Administrators Committee from 2016 – 2019 and served on three NCAA Championship committees. She was a founding board member of the Alliance of Women Coaches, and regularly serves as a faculty member at events such as the NCAA Women’s Coaches Academy and the Women Leaders in College Sports professional development programs.
 
As a student athlete in field hockey, Irvine led the University of Iowa to the Big Ten regular season title and an NCAA Final Four appearance in 1999.
 
An England native, Irvine was a three-time national champion in outdoor field hockey and two-time national champion for indoor field hockey while attending Loughborough University. Irvine also played for the England Under 18 and Under 21 National team.
 
Irvine earned a Bachelor of Science degree in physical education, sports science, and sport management at Loughborough University in 1998, and a master’s degree in health, leisure, and sports studies with an emphasis in athletic administration from the University of Iowa in 2001.

Dr. Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D., Director, Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport

nmlavoi@umn.edu

Nicole M. LaVoi, Ph.D. is a Senior Lecturer in the area of social and behavioral sciences in the School of Kinesiology at the University of Minnesota and the Director of the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport. Through her multidisciplinary research she answers critical questions that can make a difference in the lives of sport stakeholders—particularly girls and women. As a leading scholar on gender, leadership and women coaches, Dr. LaVoi has published 100+ book chapters, research reports and peer-reviewed articles across multiple disciplines. Her seminal research includes the annual Women in College Coaching Report Card™ which is aimed at retaining and increasing the number of women in the coaching profession and holding decision makers accountable, a groundbreaking book Women in Sports Coaching (2016), and a documentary GAME ON: Women Can Coach (2018). GAME ON is the third Emmy-nominated collaborative film project with tptMN; the first was Concussion & Female Athletes (2011) and the second, Media Coverage & Female Athletes: Women Play Sports, Just Not in the Media (2013) won a regional Emmy for best sports documentary. As a public scholar she hosts a podcast, consults with a variety of stakeholder groups, speaks frequently around the world, fields media requests, provides thought leadership, and serves on numerous mission-driven, national advisory boards related to girls and women in sport. LaVoi played collegiate tennis at Gustavus Adolphus College earning two-time Academic All-American status and an NCAA-III National Team Championship, and currently serves on the Board of Trustees. Prior to her career in the academy, she was a USPTA Teaching Pro, an assistant coach at Carleton College, and the head tennis coach at Wellesley College. In her free time she enjoys being outdoors, biking, hiking, golf, and soaking up the sun.

Felisha Legette Jack, Head Coach, Basketball, Syracuse University

Felisha Legette-Jack, a 1989 graduate of Syracuse University and Orange All-American, is home. The Syracuse native and 20-year collegiate head coach took the reins of the Orange basketball program on March 26, 2022.
 
Legette-Jack is synonymous with Syracuse women’s basketball success. The 1985 BIG EAST Conference Freshman of the Year, three-time All-BIG EAST selection and Syracuse’s first two-time honorable mention All-American. Legette-Jack helped lead the Orange to their first BIG EAST Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance in school history. More than 30 years later, she still ranks in the top-10 on Syracuse’s career scoring and rebounding lists. She is one of three players in program history to score more than 1,500 points (1,526) and grab more than 900 rebounds (927).

One of the all-time Orange greats, Legette-Jack returns to her hometown with more than 30 years of coaching experience. She spent the last 10 years building the University at Buffalo’s women’s program into one of the perennial powers in the Mid-American Conference (MAC), leading the Bulls to four NCAA Tournaments, including the 2018 Sweet Sixteen. She is the all-time winningest coach in Bulls history with a 202-115 record and four MAC Tournament Championships. During her career she has guided three different Division I programs to a combined 13 winning seasons, nine postseason berths and six 20-win seasons, and has accrued a 343-279 record.

Legette-Jack led Nottingham High School to a pair of state titles before attending Syracuse, where she was a standout on Coach Barbara Jacobs’ teams from 1984-89.
 
At Syracuse, Legette-Jack earned BIG EAST Freshman of the Year honors after helping lead the Orange to their first BIG EAST Championship in school history. As a sophomore, Legette-Jack averaged a double-double (15.8 ppg and 10.1 rpg) en route to honorable mention All-America honors and All-BIG EAST recognition.
 
The next year she earned honorable mention All-America and All-BIG EAST Second Team recognition. After missing the 1987-88 season due to a knee injury, she returned to earn the court earn All-BIG EAST honors for the fourth time in 1988-89. She finished her career as the program’s all-time leader in points, rebounds, field goals made and attempted, and free throws made and attempted.
 
After graduating from Syracuse with bachelor’s degrees in child and family studies and psychology in 1989, Legette-Jack began her coaching career at Westhill Senior High School on the city’s West side in 1989. She made the move to the collegiate level as an assistant at Boston College from 1991-93 and never looked back.
 
Following her stint at BC, Legette-Jack returned home to Syracuse as an assistant on Coach Marianna Freeman’s staff from 1993-2000. She left in 2000 to become an assistant coach at Michigan State for two seasons, before landing her first head coaching job at Hofstra in 2002.
 
In four years, Legette-Jack turned Hofstra’s program around. During her final season Hofstra was 19-12 and advanced to the second round of the Women’s National Invitational Tournament (WNIT).
 
Named head coach at Indiana University in 2006, Legette-Jack guided the tbat program for six years. She led the Hoosiers to consecutive WNITs in her first three seasons, including a 20-win season and WNIT Quarterfinal appearance in 2009. 
 
In 2012, she returned to the Empire State when she was named the head coach at Buffalo. Legette-Jack put the UB program on the map during her decade in the Queen City. She led four Buffalo teams to four NCAA Tournaments, most recently this season, and developed the first WNBA Draft pick in school history, Cierra Dillard, who was selected by the Minnesota Lynx in 2019. Her UB teams have had five 20-win seasons and averaged more than 19 wins a campaign during her tenure.
 
The 2021-22 Bulls posted a 25-9 record, including a 16-4 mark in MAC play, and were 14-1 at home. Legette-Jack developed three All-MAC honorees in Dyaisha Fair, Georgia Woolley and Summer Hemphill. Fair finished the season ranked fourth in the nation in scoring average (23.4 points per game) and Woolley also earned MAC Freshman of the Year honors.
 
The Bulls had their most successful season in 2017-18, posting a 29-6 record, including 12-0 at home. UB earned the first NCAA at-large bid for the MAC since 1996 and danced its way to the Sweet Sixteen for the first time in school history.
 
Legette-Jack is enshrined in multiple halls of fame, including the Greater Syracuse Hall of Fame, the Syracuse Urban Sports Hall of Fame and the Syracuse University Orange Plus Hall of Fame. She was named to the BIG EAST Silver Anniversary team in 2004 and became the first female in Syracuse University history to have her jersey retired last fall when her No. 33 jersey was raised to the rafters of the Carrier Dome on Nov. 14, 2021.
 
Born Sept. 4, 1966, in Syracuse, Legette-Jack and her husband David, have one son, David Maceo, who is a graduate student on the UB men’s basketball team.

Liz Masen, CEO and Client Director, Athlete Assessments

liz.masen@athleteassessments.com

On the surface, Liz Masen has an unlikely background for a career in sport. As a self-confessed ambitious workaholic, Liz graduated with an Honors Degree in Accounting and Finance, while working full-time, and was awarded the prestigious University Medal for receiving the highest academic marks at QUT. Her professional career started in investment banking, working in Australia, Asia, and South Africa as a specialist in the Mining and Resources sector.

From investment banking, she became the youngest ever General Manager of Finance for the global gas and engineering company, BOC Gases, and it was within these predominantly male environments that one of Liz’s true passions emerged. Liz co-founded Xplore, a leadership development company for women, which grew into the leading provider of its kind within Australia. After selling out her ownership in Xplore in 2006, Liz co-founded Athlete Assessments with Bo Hanson.

Now, Liz holds joint roles as CEO and Client Director at Athlete Assessments, and looks after their key clients and consultant relationships, as well as manages marketing and new business development. Her slogan is ‘when our clients are successful, we are successful too’. Liz continues her long-term involvement with WeCOACH and has been a faculty member of the NCAA Women Coaches Academies for over a decade. These opportunities bring together Liz’s two passions of sport and the leadership development of women.

Sport is a massive part of Liz’s life, both professionally and personally. In more recent years, most of her personal time in sport revolves around her two daughters’ basketball training and sitting courtside or on the score bench at their games. Back ‘in the day’, as a 100m age champion hurdler and sprinter, Liz’s High School Track & Field team ended a 60-year drought by winning the most prestigious Girls’ High School Championship in their State. Liz also has a black belt in Taekwondo, has previously coached Surf Sports at her local surf club, has been a volunteer youth coach in basketball, ran her first marathon in 2000 and her second (and last!) in the 2014 New York Marathon. Her proudest sporting moments have not been her own, instead she counts cheering on her husband to win medals at three of his four Olympics, and watching her daughters benefit from all that sport provides in their personal development, as the most special times.

Felecia “Fee” Mulkey, Head Coach, Acrobatics & Tumbling, Baylor University

felecia_mulkey@baylor.edu

A transcendent leader on the forefront of the growing sport of acrobatics and tumbling, Felecia Mulkey has won all 10 of the National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association (NCATA) championships offered and boasts a career record of 108-5 over 11 seasons as a head coach of acrobatics and tumbling.

Entering the 2021-22 season, she is in her eighth year as the head coach at Baylor University and has completely changed the program since arriving in Waco in June of 2014. After winning four-straight NCATA titles at the University of Oregon, she has led the Bears to six-straight NCATA championships with a 65-2 seven-year record in Waco and compiled a 38-meet win streak (2017-21) as she has tutored 19 NCATA-All-Americans in seven seasons.

Off the mat, Mulkey works tirelessly in growing the sport of acrobatics and tumbling. She continues to play a key role in the progression of acro¬batics & tumbling’s effort to gain NCAA sport status. She currently serves as the Director of Expansion for the NCATA (National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association), acting as the liaison between the sport and athletic directors looking to add the sport as A&T pushes into becoming an NCAA emerging sport. It currently has been adopted as an emerging sport by Divisions II and III, with Division I expected to follow suit in the coming months.

She has also influenced many of her former student-athletes to give back to the sport that has given them so much, as 10 of them are currently head coaches of collegiate acrobatics & tumbling programs at universities and colleges around the country. With 33 active programs entering the 2021 season, that accounts for almost a third of the head coaches nationally.

Dr. Amy Wilson, Ph.D., Managing Director of Inclusion, NCAA Office of Inclusion

awilson@ncaa.org

Dr. Amy Wilson serves as the NCAA’s Managing Director of Inclusion where she drives inclusive excellence throughout college athletics by supporting member institutions’ commitment to diversity, inclusion and gender equity among its student-athletes, coaches, and administrators. Wilson leads the NCAA Office of Inclusion’s efforts to provide resources, education, and support in the core areas of disability, international, LGBTQ, race/ethnicity, and women. An expert on gender equity and Title IX, she has authored multiple national reports on Title IX. Wilson has led projects such as optimizing the Senior Woman Administrator designation and serves on the leadership team for the Common Ground initiative, which fosters discussions about religion and LGBTQ with the goal of supporting all student-athletes. Wilson’s entire career has been in higher education where she won multiple awards for teaching excellence. She was a tenured faculty member at Illinois College and served as the Faculty Athletic Representative. A former student-athlete and member of the Illinois College Athletics Hall of Fame, Wilson has a bachelor’s and master’s degree in English and earned a Ph.D. in Health and Sport Studies with a concentration in Athletic Administration at the University of Iowa. Since 2005, she worked closely with nationally recognized Title IX expert Dr. Christine Grant on equity issues in intercollegiate athletics and has given numerous presentations on Title IX, gender equity, and inclusion on both the national and international levels. In 2018, Women Leaders in College Sports honored Wilson with the Nell Jackson Award for her work as an advocate for gender equity and diversity.

Vaness Fuchs, CEO, WeCOACH

vanessa@wecoachsports.org

A veteran leader with 20+ years of experience in athletic administration, Vanessa Fuchs joined WeCOACH as Chief Executive Officer in March 2022. Before WeCOACH, she served as Senior Associate Athletics Director and Senior Woman Administrator at her alma mater, Florida State University.

Vanessa’s tenure at FSU began in 2010, where she served in a variety of important leadership roles over the past decade. Named the 2015 Women Leaders in College Sports Division I Administrator of the Year and an FSU Champion Beyond the Game honoree in 2016, she was instrumental in providing strategic direction for departmental initiatives focused on student-athlete welfare, enhancing athletic performance, fundraising and revenue generation, gender equity, and diversity and inclusion.

In June of 2013, former Florida State President Dr. Eric Barron named Vanessa the school’s interim Athletics Director as she became the first woman to lead the Seminoles’ Athletic Department. The former Seminole basketball player was one of just seven women leading an athletics department among the 124 schools that participated at the FBS level in 2012.

Prior to arriving at Florida State, Vanessa committed seven years to the NCAA in Indianapolis in Academic and Membership Affairs. She got her start as a Championships Intern with the ACC in 2001. The Pompano Beach, Florida, native was a four-year letterwinner for the Seminoles’ women’s basketball team from 1997-2001. She was the team co-captain in her senior year and finished her career as a four-time ACC Honor Roll selection.

Vanessa graduated Magna Cum Laude with a bachelor’s degree in communications at Florida State University and earned her master’s degree in sport administration from the University of North Carolina.

 

Jan Whitbeck, Sr. Director of Events & Branding, WeCOACH

jan@wecoachsports.org

With 20+ years of event management, media, marketing, and collegiate athletics experience, Jan became the director of events for WeCOACH in June 2019 and was promoted to Senior Director of Events & Branding in January 2021.

Before WeCOACH, Jan served as the Director of Events for the University of Minnesota Alumni Association. Annually, she executed their signature events, including the Annual Celebration, Distinguished Teaching Awards, Alumni Awards, Ski-U-Mania and alumni events for athletics post-season games.

Prior to the University of Minnesota, Jan was the Marketing and Campus Relations Coordinator for the University of Wyoming Residence Life and Dining Services. She also spent ten years working for iHeart Media in Denver as a Promotions & Marketing Director and as an Account Executive for both AM and FM stations. While there, she managed key national accounts, including Coors, Hershey, and Dos Equis, as well as co-produced the Gears, Games & Gadgets Expo and coordinated station events for the Susan G. Komen Denver Race for the Cure, and the CU/CSU Rocky Mountain Showdown football games.

As a former women’s basketball student-athlete at Glendale Community College (AZ) and Western State Colorado University, Jan was an all-RMAC honorable mention performer and was the recipient of the WSCU Paul W. Wright Female Athlete of the Year award. She also served as an assistant women’s basketball coach at Western State Colorado University and Regis University.

Jan holds a master’s degree in sport administration from the University of Northern Colorado, and in her spare time loves traveling, boating, hiking, attending Minnesota Lynx games and Golden Gopher sporting events. She resides in Minneapolis with her wife Julie and two Beagles, Dylan & Josie.