Mónica Lebrón, Deputy AD at Tulane, visits with @TaiMBrown to discuss her transition from an extensive career in development to the number two spot with significant sport oversight. Lebrón, whose work in athletics started freshman year in college, talks about building confidence in her leadership and supervisory abilities as her time as Deputy progresses. She also emphasizes her gratitude for Greg McGarity (Georgia) and Carla Wilson (Virginia) for advice and support on making the move to Tulane.
Gary Pine, Director of Athletics at Azusa Pacific, visits @TaiMBrown on the topic of the dwindling number of NCAA D2 football playing institutions on the west coast of the United States. Pine talks about some of the possible reasons why many schools have made the decision to drop football over the past 20 years. He also discusses the challenges such as travel and potential missed playoff opportunities that are presented with only three football playing D2 schools in the general area of the country.
Pennie Parker, Director of Athletics at Rollins College, visits @TaiMBrown on the topic of serving on industry committees and boards while executing a full-time job as a leader. Parker serves as the Chair of the NCAA Division II Management Council, the President of the D2 Athletic Director's Association, and a member of the NCAA Legislation Committee. She discusses how she prepares for meetings while simultaneously fulfilling her role as AD and serving the Student-Athletes at Rollins College.
Tommy Gray, Executive Associate AD for External Relations at Stanford, visits @TaiMBrown to discuss Stanford Athletics' Business Strategy Team and its influence within the organization. Gray explains the benefits of implementing a data analysis mindset throughout an athletics department. He also addresses the potential pitfalls of trying to make everything quantitative as opposed to understanding the value of the human element.
Kirsten Ford, Associate Commissioner/SWA for the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC), visits @TaiMBrown at the 2019 NCAA Convention. The RMAC has seen a school come or go in each of the last five years. Ford discusses her role at the RMAC and what she does when a school is preparing to leave, and/or join the conference. She also discusses what happens behind the scenes at the conference office when changes are on the horizon.
Doug Gillin, AD at Appalachian State, visits @TaiMBrown as the two discuss how Gillin's time working in marketing and working for legendary Missouri AD Mike Alden helped to mold his decision making process now that he is in the chair. Gillin emphasizes how important it is for leaders to understand the sense of urgency when gathering information to make big decisions. He also gives insight on how the habits he developed throughout his career helped him prepare for his recent football coaching search.
Nan Carney-DeBord, Associate VP & Director of Athletics at Denison College, visits @TaiMBrown to discuss Denison's Development Through Sport initiative. Carney-DeBord defines the program as culture developed through leadership, mentorship, and character education. The initiative emphasizes intentionality with a four pronged focus: 1. Athletic Team Culture 2. Student-Athlete Development 3. Coaching Development 4. Professional Development.
Irma Garcia, Director of Athletics at Saint Francis College in Brooklyn, visits @TaiMBrown on the topic of principled leadership. Garcia, a long term fixture at Saint Francis, discusses how she has kept a purpose and guiding principles at the forefront of her leadership. She and her staff select a theme for each year and implement programs which emphasize that theme throughout the department.
Willie Simmons, Head Football Coach at Florida A&M, visits @TaiMBrown as two discuss Simmons' use of an anonymous staff self evaluation process called forced ranking. A tool used in the corporate world, forced ranking allows a staff to evaluate itself and anonymously rank each member on a set of evaluation points. Simmons discusses how he uses this process within his coaching staff and, of course, this anonymous evaluation also includes him as the head coach.
Dr. Brian Wickstrom, Director of Athletics at UIW, joins @TaiMBrown to discuss the promise to grow an athletics department using only self-generated revenue. With commitments from the university to keep institutional funding constant and to allow athletics to keep all its self-generated revenue, Wickstrom's programs have been able to flourish without requesting any additional operating funds. This setup has helped Wickstrom increase his operating budgets at each of his stops as an AD.
Joe Karlgaard, Director of Athletics at Rice, visits @TaiMBrown on the topic of engaging influential stakeholders. Karlgaard emphasizes the importance of including influential individuals in the process of making major decisions as a leader. He mentions the president as "the" stakeholder based on the inherent nature of influence the position has on a campus. Karlgaard also acknowledges that making decisions in a vacuum may not be the best idea when seeking longevity in leadership.
Lauren Adee, Sr. Associate AD for Executive Affairs at SMU, visits @TaiMBrown on the topic of leaving a development position to work in strategic planning. Adee spent most of her career fundraising but recently joined the SMU staff in a new role involving strategic planning, internal controls, and more. She discusses the quantitative evaluation approach she was accustomed to while working in development and gives insight on how she will be evaluated now in a position which is more project oriented.
Craig Fink, Sr. Associate AD for Advancement & Chief Revenue Officer at UNC Greensboro joins @TaiMBrown to discuss some of the creative ways the UNCG Spartans go about fundraising. Fink talks about one of the more creative programs in which current Student-Athletes donate to the Spartan Club. Boasting 100% participation over the last five years, the True Spartan Challenge has created a culture of philanthropy among the current Student-Athletes.
Matt Donovan, Sr. Associate AD for Development at University of Indianapolis, visits with @TaiMBrown to discuss creating a successful culture for development in an athletics department. Donovan, 24 years into his tenure with UIndy, gives insight on what it takes to be successful when working in fundraising. He emphasizes that potential donors should know why they are important to the process. Donovan also speaks to the importance of the entire department asking themselves, "Are we doing the best we can do?"
Marie Tuite, Athletics Director at San Jose State, joins @TaiMBrown to discuss making collaborative decisions. Tuite talks about her process for receiving input from her staff when weighing important options. She emphasizes the importance and benefit of a strong senior team when in the AD chair as there is always an abundance of information to synthesize. The conversation rounds out on the topic of making decisions that may be in contrast to the recommendations of the staff.
Brian Sisson, Athletics Director at Saint Mary's University of Minnesota, visits @TaiMBrown on the topic of getting to know conference colleagues. Sisson details his road trip to visit fellow ADs within the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. He also discusses his vision for fundraising at Saint Mary's as he closes out his first four months in the AD chair.
John Cheney, Executive Associate AD at NIU, visits @TaiMBrown as the two discuss Cheney's stint as the interim Associate VP for Facilities and how that experience ties to his current role in athletics. Cheney also covers creating and implementing NIU Athletics' Facilities Master Plan, specifically as the state of Illinois entered a two year budgetary fiasco.
Wendy Wilson, Associate AD for Compliance & Student-Athlete Welfare at University of Wisconsin-Parkside, visits @TaiMBrown to discuss educating new coaches, students, and staff about compliance. Working through a 75% turnover within the athletics staff, Wilson details her process of continual education which helps onboard those new to the department. A self-proclaimed compliance nerd, she also talks about her love for learning which helps to keep her in tune with what is going on in the athletics industry.
Bill Kramer, Head Football Coach at Naples High School in Florida, visits @TaiMBrown and the 1.Question Podcast to discuss the high school coaches voice within the NCAA. Coach Kramer, nationally involved with the game of football, the coaching profession, and high school sports in general, gives insight on how high school coaches have to adjust to NCAA legislation. On the topic of recruiting and the early signing date, Kramer offers advice to college coaches as the season ends and the search for talent ramps up.
Kelley Kish, AD at Lake Erie College, revisits @TaiMBrown on the 1.Question Podcast to give an update on day 365 of leading Lake Erie Athletics. As she embarks on the start of year two, Kish discusses how some of her early decisions are currently paying dividends. She also talks about laying the foundation for a strategic plan as she leads the staff through exercises to help identify individual values, as well as those for the department. The conversation ends with advice for those new to the AD chair.
David Harris, Director of Athletics at Northern Iowa, visits @TaiMBrown to discuss career progression. Harris talks about his path from Student-Athlete Services to AD. He recalls solving an organizational problem at Wisconsin which caught the eye of then football coach, Barry Alvarez. He also touches on the importance of finding success in uncomfortable situations, as well as making and managing decisions. A proponent of mentorship, Harris prepares his staff for a career outside of his leadership.
Turnkey Search, a subsidiary of Turnkey Sports & Entertainment, recently announced the addition of long-time media executive Rick Alessandri to the talent recruitment/executive search firm. Matt Roberts visited with Alessandri on a number of items related to the media rights and the future of media and college athletics.
Dr. Chelsea Herman, Sr. Associate AD & SWA at Cal State San Bernardino, visits @TaiMBrown at the 2018 Women Leaders in College Sports Convention to discuss the transition from internal relations to running the external side of an athletics department. Herman talks about going from educating coaches about compliance internally to her current role where she recently dealt with a brush fire at a soccer match. She also talks about the creativity necessary when leading the external relations side of athletics.
Ronald Machtley, President at Bryant University, visits @TaiMBrown to give a presidential perspective from the NCAA Division I Board of Directors. Machtley, in his 23rd year as President, tells what his philosophy was before being appointed to the committee and how his thoughts on the NCAA has changed since his appointment. He also serves on the Board of Governors and touches on why the recommendations from the Rice Commission will prove to be beneficial to all of college athletics.
Marcus Woodson, Defensive Backs Coach at Auburn, visits @TaiMBrown to discuss adjusting to new leadership when changing coaching jobs. Woodson, a 14 year coaching veteran, goes into detail about the process of maintaining his leadership values while adapting to the culture of a new program and the leadership style of a new head coach. He notes the importance of personal leadership vs leadership tied to a position and touches on how one can be much more influential than the other, especially in the coaching profession.