Director of Athletics, Chair of the Department of Physical Education, Recreation, & Athletics (PERA)

Wellesley, Massachusetts
Jan 17, 2019
Institution Type
Four-Year Institution

The world’s preeminent college for women, Wellesley College is known for its intellectual rigor, its belief in the enduring importance of service (and putting that belief into practice), and its cultivation in students of an inclusive, pragmatic approach to leadership. Located in Wellesley, Massachusetts, Wellesley College is one of the leading undergraduate, liberal arts colleges in the United States. The College’s 500-acre campus near Boston is home to 2,350 undergraduate students. As a Division III institution, Wellesley Physical Education, Recreation, and Athletics strives for excellence at the conference, regional, and national levels, while providing opportunities for students to achieve their potential and learn the values of discipline, leadership, critical thinking, and responsibility to oneself and to others.


Wellesley is a member of the New England Women’s & Men’s Athletic Conference (NEWMAC), the Liberty League (Golf), and the Seven Sisters. The athletics program supports 13 varsity teams, a physical education program requiring all students to complete eight credits for graduation, and an array of wellness, competitive, and recreational club sports.


Reporting to the provost and dean of the college, the director of athletics/chair of physical education and recreation provides vision, strategic direction, and administrative leadership to the department of physical education, recreation, and athletics. The director/chair serves as the chair of the department of physical education and as such is the permanent chairperson of the faculty promotion and reappointments committee. The director/chair also works institutionally to develop and build a culture of wellness and wellness-related activities for all Wellesley students, faculty, administrators and staff.


The new director/chair will be responsible for continuing to enhance the competitiveness of a Division III intercollegiate athletics program that is imbedded in a strong liberal arts, academically centered learning environment. As a strong institutional partner, the director/chair provides leadership to staff and coaches, and works collaboratively and productively with academic affairs, student affairs, and health and counseling around an emerging institutional health and wellness agenda. The director/chair works collaboratively with coaches and the office of admissions on the recruitment of scholar athletes; will continue the focus on developing relationships with alumnae, particularly in support of the athletics program; will encourage and promote an inclusive community among all students, departmental faculty, and staff; and will continue to advance the recreation program as part of the College’s wellness initiatives. The new director/chair will demonstrate an understanding of the components of well-being and the ability to leverage recreational activities and the physical education curriculum in the collaboration, development, and implementation of campus wide wellness strategies.


The director/chair leads and manages an organization with an annual budget of approximately $1.1 million, 13 varsity sports, 270 scholar athletes, nine competitive club sports, including 77 full and part-time positions throughout the department. Representing the College and the interests of student-athletes, coaches, and staff in service to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) and the NEWMAC Conference is also an important responsibility of the director/chair.


A master’s degree is required; significant, progressive professional experience leading a complex, dynamic, and diverse department is preferred. The successful candidate will possess a comprehensive understanding of intercollegiate athletics administration, student-athlete development, NCAA compliance within a Division III environment, and the role of fundraising in supporting strategic and operating objectives. A collaborative management approach, coupled with superior communication and relationship-building skills, strong planning and fiscal competencies, an understanding of the role of enrollment at a small, private college, a familiarity with program development and assessment, excellent problem solving abilities, and a commitment to diversity and inclusiveness will be important considerations in the selection of the next director of athletics/chair of physical education and recreation.


Review of applications will begin February 18, 2019 and continue until the position is filled. Applications, including a position-specific cover letter and resume, may be submitted online at Nominations for this position may be emailed to Dell D. Robinson at [email protected] Applicants needing reasonable accommodation to participate in the application process should contact Spelman Johnson at 413-529-2895.


Visit the Wellesley College website at


Wellesley College is an Equal Opportunity Employer, and we are committed to increasing the diversity of the college community and the curriculum. Wellesley College and all its subcontractors shall abide by the requirements of 41 CFR 60–1.4(a), 60–300.5(a) and 60–741.5(a). These regulations prohibit discrimination against qualified individuals based on their status as protected veterans or individuals with disabilities, and prohibit discrimination against all individuals based on their race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, or national origin. Moreover, these regulations require that Wellesley College and all of its subcontractors take affirmative action to employ and advance in employment individuals without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, disability, or veteran status. Candidates who believe they can contribute to that goal are encouraged to apply.

Location of position:

Wellesley, MA

Applications should be sent to::

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