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NEWS: Hopkins names its first female athletic director (USA)

bal-hopkins-names-its-first-female-athletic-di-001Before she even stepped on the Johns Hopkins University campus, Alanna W. Shanahan thought that her background at an Ivy League school made her the right person to run the Baltimore institution?s 24-varsity athletic department.

?I really felt like there was a lot about Hopkins that struck me based on my experience at Penn,? said Shanahan, a longtime sports administrator at the University of Pennsylvania who was named Hopkins? first female athletic director Monday.

?Both are fantastic institutions, both are in urban environments, both are institutions on the rise, and both are institutions that very much value the true scholar-athlete experience. They?re very dedicated to the appropriate context for student-athletes in higher education, and that?s a model that I really believe in.?

Shanahan, a native of Wallingford, Pa., who has been the deputy athletic director at Penn since 2012, will succeed Tom Calder, who announced in January that he would step down. She will be Hopkins? fourth athletic director since 1950 when she assumes her post July 18.

Shanahan becomes the school?s first female athletic director in a landscape where progress has been slow at times. Despite efforts like Title IX that have opened the door for more than 200,000 women to participate in college sports, only 10 percent of the athletic directors in Division I sports are women, according to an August 2014 study by the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee.


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