DANBURY, Conn. – Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Commissioner Dr. Kevin T. McGinniss announced University of Rochester Associate Director of Athletics Jane Possee as the 2014 ECAC Katherine Ley Award winner. Possee will be honored at the ECAC Honors Dinner on September 28th at the Sea Crest Beach Hotel in North Falmouth, Mass.
The Katherine Ley Award, named after one of the founders of the Commission on Intercollegiate Athletics for Women, was established in 1983 for the purpose of honoring an eastern women's athletics administrator who exemplifies the values and characteristics displayed by Katherine Ley which include: a strong proponent of women's issues; a creator of programs and opportunities for women in athletics, a role model for women coaches and administrators; a person of demonstrated leadership, one who has the ability to make things happen and the ability to work with others; a person with a sense of what the past has to offer and what the future may bring; a person with a sense of humor that makes good times better and bad times easier to bear.
Possee, the longest serving staff member at the University of Rochester, has been in a coaching or administrator role in the department of athletics for the last 39 years. This past year, Possee received two major awards, one from the University of Rochester and the other from the Rochester Press-Radio Club. In February, she received the Susan B. Anthony Lifetime Achievement Award from the Susan B. Anthony Center for Women’s Leadership at the University of Rochester. The award was established to recognize and celebrate women whose lives have been enriched by their years at the University of Rochester and who have inspired other women to advance and lead. In June, Possee was the recipient of the Jean Giambrone Service Award in recognition of her exemplary lifetime commitment to local women’s sports.
Arriving in 1975, Possee changed the culture of women’s athletics at the University of Rochester. Hired originally to coach the women’s basketball and field hockey teams, Possee became a leader in the charge for equitable resources for the University’s female athletes. Possee advocated for new opportunities and aid for female student-athletes, including daily practice schedules, use of the alumni gym, and full-time coaches.
In encouraging more female athletes to compete at the varsity level, Possee started the women’s lacrosse program at Rochester and coached the team for 17 years. In 1992, Possee was named the Associate Director of Athletics for Recreation and Wellness and currently oversees the operation of the Robert B Goergen Athletic Center and all the recreational programs sponsored by the Department of Athletics and Recreation.
"I am extremely humbled to be honored with this award," said Possee. "I have been in collegiate athletics for over forty years and I still very much enjoy my work. I have been extremely fortunate to work with dedicated and talented co-workers who have supported my thoughts, ideas and projects."
About the ECAC
In the 75 years since its inception, the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) has emerged as the nation's largest Conference. The ECAC has grown considerably from its charter membership of 58, currently boasting over 300 member schools in Divisions I, II and III, ranging in location from Maine to South Carolina, and westerly to Missouri. In the 2014-15 academic year, the ECAC will host nearly 100 championships in 37 men's and women's sports as the sponsors of over 5,800 varsity teams and 111,000 male and female athletes. For more information, visit www.ecacsports.com.