Coast Guard Hosts Sixth Annual Women's LeadHERship Symposium

Patti Phillips
Patti Phillips

The Coast Guard Academy held its sixth annual Women's LeadHERship Symposium on Tuesday in Billard Hall with over 120 women in attendance.

Patti Phillips, the CEO of the National Association of Collegiate Women Athletics Administrators (NACWAA) gave the keynote address to begin the symposium.

"Anytime we can get out and connect with women leaders throughout the country is super exciting," said Phillips. "I give Tim (Fitzpatrick) so much credit for putting this on and giving women in the region an opportunity to have this type of programming with outstanding speakers and panels all day long. It allows everyone to not only learn individually, but to create new networks that will help them in their careers."

The symposium also featured a coaches panel with Lauren Amundson, the volleyball coach from Marist, Trisha Brown, the women's basketball coach at Stonehill and Jen Williams, the softball coach at MIT.

An administrators panel featured Holly Strauss-O'Brien, Associate AD at Hartford, Julie Ruppert, the Commissioner at the NE-10 and Tracy Hathaway, Associate AD at UMass-Boston.

UConn field hockey head coach Nancy Stevens, who has led the Huskies to a pair of national championships (2013, 2014), kicked off the afternoon portion of the program as the guest speaker. She is the all-time winningest field hockey coach in Division I history with 639 wins.

"I first learned of this event last year and I was asked to be a panelist and they invited back to be a speaker this year," said Stevens. "It's not the Women's March on Washington, but it is a gathering of women and everyone here in this room is working to empower young women at the collegiate level to go on and do remarkable things in their careers. The vast major of CEO, CFO, and COO's in Fortune 500 companies have played intercollegiate sports and that's a fact. We really feel that the values we are transmitting and the character that is being built in athletics translates into success in life and we are really proud to be a part of that."

The over 100 attendees closed out the symposium with three breakout sessions in the afternoon to close out the day of professional development.

"The sixth Annual Women's LeadHERship Symposium was a great success - and continues the tradition we have established of providing an outstanding professional development opportunity for women at colleges and universities throughout New England," said Tim Fitzpatrick, Coast Guard Academy Director of Athletics."Patti Phillips gave an inspiring keynote address, and our panel discussions and round tables completed a great day of learning and networking for our participants. We look forward already to hosting this tremendous event again in January of 2018."