Tuskegee Athletic Director selected for NCAA Pathway Program

Deborah Rodgers, Tuskegee’s Athletic Director, will participate in the NCAA’s leadership development platform, Pathway Program

Courtesy of Tuskegee Athletics

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. __ Deborah Rodgers, Tuskegee’s Deputy Chief Athletic Director, has been chosen by the NCAA to participate in its 2023-24 Pathway Program cohort.

The program is a yearlong initiative designed to prepare senior-level athletics administrators for the next career step as directors of athletics or conference commissioners.

Under the direction of NCAA leadership development, the Pathway Program is an intensive, experiential learning opportunity for selected participants who work at an NCAA school or conference in Divisions I, II or III. The 21 participants will be paired with and have regularly scheduled meetings with a campus or conference mentor during the year. The mentors include directors of athletics, conference commissioners, and school presidents, among others in leadership roles. 

The Pathway Program is designed to help cement their leadership purpose and enhance their skills in areas that focus on strategic planning; fundraising; message articulation; diversity, equity and inclusion; organizational leadership; hiring processes; and engagement with search firms. The 2023-24 cohort will meet June 25-30 for a weeklong education session in Indianapolis and will return in October for more programming and to observe their divisions’ respective governance meetings. The program will conclude in the summer of 2024.

“The 2022-23 cohort saw four learners ascend into the director of athletics or conference commissioner role, as well as five additional learners promoted into elevated positions that bring them one step closer to leading an athletics department or athletic conference,” said DeeDee Merritt, director of leadership development at the NCAA. “The Pathway Program continues to illustrate why it is a signature developmental opportunity for senior-level administrators in the membership. We are excited to embark on another year of transformative change with the 2023-24 cohort and extend sincere thanks to our selection committee for their work.”

The Pathway Program was created in 1997 and has produced more than 282 program alumni, with nearly 30% of the graduates moving on to become athletics directors or conference commissioners. Additionally, more than 70% of the program alumni have received some level of promotion in relation to their title or job responsibilities.

Tuskegee Athletic Director selected for NCAA Pathway Program
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