After a national search conducted by the international search firm Korn Ferry, Conference USA Board of Directors Chair and Old Dominion president John R. Broderick has announced the unanimous selection of Judy MacLeod as the third Commissioner of Conference USA. With her appointment, she becomes the first female commissioner of a Football Bowl Subdivision athletics conference.
“Judy earned all of our respect and admiration during the many years she served as associate commissioner,” Broderick said. “She is well-respected nationally and will be a strong voice for the conference on issues regarding the many important challenges and opportunities facing intercollegiate athletics. The Board of Directors and the Search Committee are delighted she will now lead us.”
MacLeod has been with C-USA since September 2005, and served as the Executive Associate Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer since April 2006. She took over the role as Interim Commissioner on Sept. 15, when Britton Banowsky officially stepped down from the position.
Her responsibilities at Conference USA have included the oversight of Sports Services, Compliance, Academics and Business Affairs, in addition to general oversight of the Conference operations and serving as the liaison to the Board of Directors and the Directors of Athletics.
She was recently appointed to the new NCAA Division I Nominating Committee and will serve a two-year term as Chair of the Committee. In June 2012, MacLeod was appointed to the NCAA Division I Men's Basketball Committee and ended her term following the 2014-15 season.
“I feel very fortunate and appreciative of the confidence our member schools have placed in me to lead and serve the great group of universities in Conference USA,” MacLeod said. “We have a tremendous opportunity to make a difference in the lives of our student-athletes and I look forward to facing the challenges and opportunities together with our members.”
MacLeod came to Conference USA from The University of Tulsa, where she spent 15 years - the last 10 as the Director of Athletics. She is credited with building a complete program during her tenure at TU, highlighted by high academic achievement of student-athletes, tremendous growth in on-campus athletics facilities, competitive success, conference membership transition, and marketing and fundraising growth, as well as improved equity, integrity and diversity throughout the department.
Tulsa's facilities expansion during this time include the Donald W. Reynolds Center, which houses men's and women's basketball, volleyball, strength and conditioning, and athletic training; the Michael D. Case Tennis Center; the Donna J. Hardesty Sports Complex, which includes a softball complex, the Hurricane Soccer and Track stadium, a soccer practice field and locker room facilities; and inside Mabee Gymnasium, the Jack Zink Indoor Rowing Center, a permanent practice center for volleyball and an indoor facility for golf. In addition, refurbishment of Skelly Stadium was well under way with a number of improvements already completed and the construction of the Case Athletic Complex in the north end zone.
Tulsa transitioned into the Western Athletic Conference and then established membership in Conference USA under MacLeod's watch. In addition, women's basketball, softball and women's rowing were added during this growth period.
MacLeod was recognized in June 2004 as the Central Region Athletics Director of the Year as selected by the National Association of Collegiate Athletics Directors (NACDA).
Prior to her appointment as the Director of Athletics, she held the positions of associate athletics director, assistant athletics director, director of ticket sales, compliance officer and graduate assistant. Before working at Tulsa, MacLeod served as a sport manager for the 1990 Goodwill Games in Seattle and served as an assistant women's basketball coach at Seattle University for four seasons.
MacLeod earned her bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Puget Sound, where she was a women's basketball student-athlete, and her Master's degree in athletic administration from Tulsa.