CIAA, SIAC SWAs Combine Forces

LINCOLN UNIVERSITY, PA - Senior Woman Administrators (SWA) from the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) and the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC) held the first of a series of planned meetings to discuss collaboration and engagement between the two conferences. 

The COVID-19 pandemic and subsequent shut down of fall sports has provided a welcomed opportunity for the two conferences to connect regularly to share information, best practices, and ways to collaborate on future initiatives.

The SIAC chair and vice chair, Jacqueline Nicholson (Albany State University) and Kim Miller (Savannah State University) initiated contact with the conference office. Subsequent meetings with CIAA President Kisha Middleton (Lincoln University-PA) and CIAA Vice President LaTaya Hilliard-Gray (Winston-Salem State University), and later the full CIAA association set the plan in motion.

 "After meeting with the SWA's in the SIAC, we reached out to the SWA's in the CIAA as we knew this was an established group of administrators who would be able to provide us with guidance as we are trying to grow, said Nicholson, ASU's associate AD for academics & compliance/SWA. "Collaboration allows the SWA's to know more than we are capable of knowing by ourselves. We are truly looking forward to this partnership for years to come."

The CIAA SWAs host monthly calls and coordinate annual student-athlete programming using NCAA grant funding approved by the conference office. SWAs have an active role on several CIAA committees, including management council, championship committees, and the newly formed COVID-19 task force. Other initiatives include the CIAA Woman of the Year as well as the Miss CIAA selection process.

The two associations see future opportunities for mentorship to support new SWAs, collaboration on professional development programming for their organizations and student-athletes as well as joint social media campaigns to promote the SWA role and its impact on their respective campuses. 

"I believe this connection with the CIAA and SIAC SWA's is going to be the start of something special", said Middleton, who serves as the assistant AD/SWA and Deputy Title IX coordinator at LUPA. "There are so many talented and amazing women from all phases of their careers with so much to give to our conferences, universities, and student-athletes so they can be the best that they can." 
The SWA designation ensures a diverse group of athletic administrators from internal operations, compliance, athletic trainers, coaches, and media relations. The unique perspectives and impact of their roles in athletics, as well as to the campus, are important. 

Initiated in 1981 by NCAA membership, the senior woman administrator is the highest-ranking female in each NCAA athletics department or conference office. The purpose of the SWA designation is to promote meaningful representation of women in the leadership and management of college sports. For more information, visit

Lincoln University, the nation’s first degree-granting Historically Black College and University (HBCU), educates and empowers students to lead their communities and change the world. Lincoln offers a rigorous liberal arts education to a diverse student body of approximately 2,200 men and women in more than 35 undergraduate and graduate programs.