Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education


Higher and Adult Education


Adult Education

Committee Chair

Jeffery Wilson

Committee Member

Colton Cockrum

Committee Member

Donna Menke

Committee Member

Wendy Griswold


The lack of representation of women in the role of athletic director at National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) member institutions is an issue that needs to be addressed to open the doores for females to consider athletic administration as a career path. The purpose of this narrative inquiry was to gain a better understanding of waht factors makes successful female athletic directors at NJCAA member institutions. Data was collected using open-ended interview questions with female athletic directors, interviewing the regional director of the study participant, and a combination of photo elicitation and artifacts. Two themes emerged fomr the results of the study including the importance of knowledge of financial related issues and NJCAA rules and regulations and the passion these NJCAA athletic directors have for their student athletes whether it is the relationship developed with those student athletes or assisting them to achieve their goals and dreams. The results of this study supported Fitzgerald, et al. (1994) work that highlighted coaching experience as the most common antecedent professional position for athletic directors in the NCAA with each study participant having coaching experience. Teh ruslts also support transformational leadership theory studied by Bass (1990) and Burton and Peachey (2010) as the leadership traits utilized to overcome these challenges were empowering their staff and leading by example. In addition, this study expanded on Quarterman, et al. (1996) study on challenges confronting female athletic directors in the NCAA with financial challenges as the common denominator. The implications of this study include developing training and development programs for females already in the role of athletic director and those aspiring to become an athletic director; eliminating any barriers in the work environment to retaining and advancing women in athletic administration; and providing a framework for success for women who desire a role in athletic administration.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

Dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.