Tanya Vogel to serve as acting director.
George Washington University Director of Athletics and Recreation Patrick Nero has notified Provost Forrest Maltzman of his resignation. Mr. Nero will step down from day-to-day responsibilities effective Dec. 31 but will be available during the spring semester to assist with a smooth transition of responsibilities.
Dr. Maltzman has named Deputy Athletics Director, Senior Woman Administrator and Deputy Title IX Coordinator Tanya Vogel as acting director and will take the opportunity to evaluate the needs of the athletic department before initiating a search for a permanent successor.
"It has been an honor to serve our great student-athletes over the past six-plus years," said Mr. Nero. "I have always wanted the Department of Athletics and Recreation to be about our students and positioning them to become the next leaders of our society. It has been a privilege to be a part of the lives of these young men and women on their road to becoming champions. I want to thank our student-athletes, coaches and staff who have played a major role in my professional life at GW, as well as the student-athlete alumni, Athletics Advisory Council and loyal supporters of the program for helping us create what the department is today. I am proud of my contributions toward the success of the athletics program at GW and look forward to seeing where the future of GW Athletics leads as I pursue the next phase of my career."
Hired in April 2011, Mr. Nero saw the Colonials achieve unprecedented success across GW's 27 intercollegiate, varsity athletic programs during his tenure. Under Mr. Nero, 13 different GW Athletics teams won championships in their respective sports with 22 championships earned in all and 18 Coach of the Year honors. In addition to the championships won in competition, GW student-athletes also claimed back-to-back NCAA Team Works Division I Championships under Mr. Nero by performing more hours of community service than any other school nationwide in each of the last two years.
GW Athletics has recorded five consecutive semesters with a cumulative department GPA greater than 3.15 and reached fundraising milestones that included more than 2,000 donors to the Buff and Blue Fund in 2016-17, with a former student-athlete percentage giving rate of nearly 25 percent. For his efforts, the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics awarded Mr. Nero the Under Armour AD of the Year award in June.
"The department has recently concluded a very successful five-year era driven by our 2012 Strategic Plan,” Mr. Nero said. “I am also completing my 30th year in intercollegiate athletics, the last 15 of them in a leadership position. This is a good time for me, personally, and the university to make a change, it allows for fresh perspectives and ideas to continue the momentum the department has gained these past six years."
“I want to thank Patrick for his work in leading the implementation of the Board of Trustees’ directive—the Strategic Plan for Athletics—which has led to best in class athletics facilities, greater resources and support for student-athletes and an emphasis on leadership and success in the classroom, on the playing field and in the community. He has built a strong foundation for our athletics programs that has allowed our student-athletes to compete at the highest level,” Dr. Maltzman said. “I also want to thank Tanya Vogel for her willingness to serve as acting director, and I know she will ably lead the department during this time of transition.”
In her third stint with GW Athletics, Ms. Vogel has seen intercollegiate athletics from every vantage point. As a student-athlete competing in soccer as an undergraduate at GW, Ms. Vogel learned firsthand what the student-athlete experience should be. She later returned to the university as head coach of her former program, before serving in a development capacity until she departed for a three-year stint at Northern Arizona, where she worked as senior associate athletics director, senior woman administrator and deputy Title IX coordinator. Ms. Vogel returned to GW in 2015 to fulfill the same responsibilities she carried at NAU, while also overseeing strength and conditioning, sports medicine, educational support services, facilities and working on student-athlete and staff development.
A GW Athletic Hall of Famer, Ms. Vogel's versatility and experience are also manifested in the number of committees on which she has served, including the NCAA Amateurism Cabinet, the Big Sky Ethical Conduct and Violations Committee, the NAU Student Safety Task Force, as well as the IAC Code of Conduct, Gender Equity Student-Athlete Well-Being and Diversity and Inclusion Group subcommittees. In 2013, Ms. Vogel was selected for the prestigious NCAA Pathway Program, which works to elevate senior-level administrators to the next step as directors of athletics. Ms. Vogel has also participated in the NACWAA Executive Institute, designed to teach executive leadership solutions and help advance high-level women administrators to executive positions within athletics.