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Cheryl Levick is new SCU athletic director

SANTA CLARA, Calif., May 31, 2000 - Santa Clara University President Paul Locatelli, S.J., today announced the appointment of Cheryl Levick, senior associate athletic director at Stanford University, as the new SCU director of athletics.

Levick is the first female athletic director at SCU, and the first female athletic director in the West Coast Conference. Fewer than 10 percent of Division I athletic directors nationwide are women.

Locatelli introduced Levick at a 2 p.m. press conference at the Santa Clara campus, and said "she brings the skills and expertise to develop a broad-based program which will gain national recognition for its quality and success among universities of our size and scope."

"She is a strong leader who can inspire a shared vision for athletics that is integral to the mission of the University," Locatelli said.

"I have always admired Santa Clara for its strong academic standards, great student athletes and good coaches," Levick told reporters and an audience of about 75 faculty, staff and students.

She said one of her first leadership goals would be to develop a strategic plan for the athletic department.

John Ottoboni, an SCU alumnus and San Jose lawyer who with history professor George Giacomini was head of the University's athletic director search committee, said the University's first-ever female athletic director is someone who "can help make us better, while maintaining a strong appreciation for the Bronco heritage."

Locatelli said Levick has signed a five-year contract, effective July 1, and will be a senior administrator at the 7,700-student Jesuit Catholic university, reporting directly to Acting Provost Denise Carmody. Details of Levick's compensation package were not disclosed.

After the press conference, Levick was to spend the afternoon meeting coaches, athletes and staff. She succeeds Carroll Williams, who announced in January his retirement after eight years as athletic director and 22 years as the Broncos' basketball coach.

Levick is in her 12th year as the top assistant to Stanford Athletic Director Ted Leland, overseeing the internal operations of the department and acting as primary administrator for an athletic program that for more than a decade has been considered the best in the country.

In 1998 and 1999 she was named one of the nation's Top 25 Female Sports Executives by Street and Smith's SportsBusiness Journal.

She is a member of the Pacific-10 Conference Council, the San Jose Sports Authority Board, the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation Administrative Committee, the NCAA Academic/Compliance/Eligibility Cabinet, and chairs the NCAA Committee on Women's Athletics.

Prior to coming to Stanford in 1988, Levick was an assistant commissioner of the Pacific-10 Conference; assistant director of communications and assistant director of women's programs at the NCAA; and women's gymnastics coach and associate athletic director at Slippery Rock University; assistant gymnastics coach and synchronized swim coach at Indiana University; and gymnastics coach and assistant women's track coach at Pattonville Senior High School in St. Louis, Mo.

Levick is a 1974 honors graduate of the University of Missouri, and holds a master's degree, with honors, in athletic administration from Indiana University. She has two daughters: Heather, a student at UCLA and Melissa, a student at St. Francis High School.

SCU competes at the Division I level in 17 intercollegiate sports. Its men's soccer team was a national runner-up and its women's soccer team a national semifinalist in 1999; the Bronco women's volleyball and women's basketball competed in post-season tournaments in 1999-2000.

In the most recent study of the performance of the nation's college athletic programs on gender equity, SCU was listed among the nation's top colleges and universities, regionally and nationally. Founded in 1851, it admitted its first female students in 1961.

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For more information about Santa Clara University athletics, see www.santaclarabroncos.com. For more information about the press conference, or for general information about the University, see www.scu.edu, or call Barry Holtzclaw, 408-554-5126, pager, 408-237-0116 or email news@scu.edu.

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