2010 to 2011 – National Association of Collegiate Women Athletic Administrators

President Susan Bassett led the organization through transformational changes during her year as president following the hiring of CEO Patti Phillips. During Susan’s presidency, she and the board of directors supported and guided Patti’s work to restructure staff roles and responsibilities, hire excellent professionals, and revamp organizational systems and finances all while moving the national headquarters to NACWAA’s new home in Kansas City. This pivotal year for NACWAA established the framework for Patti’s leadership and charted the course for the trajectory of NACWAA to be the industry leader for women in college sports.

In the words of Susan: “As president-elect and part of the executive committee charged with conducting the search for the next executive director after Jennifer Alley announced her retirement, I had the privilege of working with past president Barb Schroeder, and president Carolayne Henry to lead the process that led to the hiring of Patti Phillips. Patti earned our trust and confidence during the process and has exceeded all expectations. Patti is a transformational leader who has demonstrated that thinking big, engaging people and working hard can propel women to reach new heights in the industry of college sports.”

In 2011, the board of directors dug into the financial state of NACWAA and developed a new comprehensive cash and investment management policy by establishing the definition, purpose, investment, and use of the operating, opportunity, foundation, and reserve funds.

“We recreated our organizational systems and finances. We put financial structures in place to build the critical foundation for future growth and stability for NACWAA.  We essentially worked with Patti to relaunch the organization by updating financial practices, policies and procedures. To see how far NACWAA has come in a short year and where it is going is absolutely incredible. I am grateful I was able to be a part of such a special time for the organization. The friendships I developed with Patti and the other board members as we re-established the organization will be cherished forever,” Susan said. 

The 2011 National Convention in Pittsburg saw over 400 participants, which is over 150 attendees stronger than the previous year.

“I couldn’t be more proud of the growth of this organization. It is so important for this organization to continue to grow, evolve, and change. We must continue to go for it and continue to think about new ways of doing things. Keep on keeping on!” Susan said.

Other major accomplishments from NACWAA during this time:

  • Launched new website and social media platform
  • Transitioned all membership files to new Association Management System
  • Hosted a reception for the first time for athletic directors, senior woman administration and Conference officials during the Big 12 Basketball Championships in Kansas City
  • Hosted a first-time Regional Leadership Seminar in conjunction with the NCAA Gender Equity Forum in Maryland
  • Hosted a reception and an educational session at the NAIA National Convention in Kansas City
  • Hosted a session for the first time at NACDA convention with Joe Castiglione, Warde Manual, Tim Hall, Keith Tribble, and Patty Viverito
  • Hosted an educational session for women in the MIAA Conference
  • President-Elect Julie Hermann represented NACWAA at the Presidential Retreat in Indianapolis

NACWAA continued to be committed to recognizing the achievements and successes of administrators working in athletics. Click here to view all NACWAA/ Women Leaders in College Sports award winners.

NACWAA Board Members 2010-11

Darlene Bailey, William Jewell College
Anucha Browne, NCAA
Kim Chandler, Macalester College
Vicky Chun, Colgate University
Sandy Hatfield Clubb, Drake University
Debbie Corum, University of Connecticut
Debby DeAngelis, Cal State-East Bay
Carolyn Schlie Femovich, Patriot League
Carolayne Henry, Past President, Mountain West Conference
Julie Hermann, President-Elect, University of Louisville 
Lynn Holzman, NCAA
Lori Mazza, University of Pittsburgh, Bradford
Germaine McAuley, Spelman College
Joan McDermott, Metropolitan State University of Denver
Faith Shearer, Elon University
Jane Miller, University of Virginia
Barbara Osborne, University of North Carolina
Faith Shearer, Elon University

NACWAA President: 2010 - 2011

Susan Bassett
Carnegie Mellon

Susan Bassett has been Associate Vice President and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreational Sports at her alma mater Ithaca College since 2013. During the 2017-18 academic year, Susan was promoted as an associate vice president in Student Affairs in addition to her duties in athletics and recreational sports.

Since her return to IC, Susan’s mission has been to build on the foundation of excellence and legacy of achievement synonymous with IC Athletics. Susan’s priority in all realms of the program is focused on student experience through participation in a comprehensive educational athletics experience. Through the course of her first year she began the process of creating the “Performance Program” with the Leadership Academy positioned as a cornerstone of student development.  

During the 2013-2014 academic year, Susan spearheaded an athletics identity branding process which was launched in August of 2014. The implementation of a comprehensive identity for the Ithaca College Bombers was the first ever for IC and has inspired program cohesion with the motto, “27 sports, one team”.

Since Susan was named the Director of Athletics, Ithaca has finished within the top 20 in the Learfield Director’s Cup four times, including back-to-back top 10 finishes in 2016-17 and 2017-18. Ithaca has claimed 13 individual national titles since 2014-15, while the department as a whole has secured 14 top 10 finishes in NCAA Championships.

Susan joined Ithaca College after serving as Director of Athletics, Physical Education, and Recreation at Carnegie Mellon University from 2005-2013.  

In June 2010, Susan was named the Under Armour Athletics Director of the Year for the Central Region of the United States. In 2010, she became the first active Division III athletics director to be elected president of the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletics Administrators (NACWAA), now Women Leaders in College Sports.

Prior to her arrival at Carnegie Mellon, Susan served as the director of athletics at William Smith College in Geneva, N.Y. for 10 years from 1995-2005.

Susan began her career as head swimming and diving coach and assistant lacrosse and field hockey coach at William Smith from 1980-1987, where she coached 22 Swimming All-Americans. She also served as the head men’s and women’s swimming coach at Union College from 1987-1995, where she mentored 92 All-Americans and was named the NCAA Division III Coach of the Year in 1993.

Susan earned her bachelor’s degree in physical education with a concentration in Athletic Training from Ithaca College in 1979 and was inducted into the Ithaca College Hall of Fame in 2005. She received a master’s degree in physical education from Indiana University in 1980. Susan was inducted into the Union College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006 and into the Heron Hall of Honor at William Smith College in 2012.

Learn more about Susan Bassett in her Women Leaders Podcast episode.

World News

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey

After an extremely successful 25-year run of the Oprah Winfrey Show, the show came to an end in 2011 and Oprah became the first African American woman to appear on the Forbes billionaire list. With its placement on 120 channels and an audience of 10 million people, the show grossed $125 million by the end of its first year, of which Oprah received $30 million. By 2011, the show was aired on nearly 212 U.S. stations and in more than 100 countries worldwide. 

According to Forbes magazine, Oprah was the richest African American of the 20th century and the world’s only black billionaire for three years running. Life magazine hailed her as the most influential woman of her generation. 

In November of 2013, Oprah received the nation’s highest civilian honor, the Presidential Medal of Freedom. President Barack Obama awarded her this medal for her contributions to her country.