ATLANTA (Feb. 7, 2019) – Sue Donohoe will receive the 2019 Jostens-Berenson Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of her lifelong commitment of service to women’s basketball, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association announced today.
In 2011, Donohoe was named executive director of the Kay Yow Cancer Fund, a position she held until 2015. Before joining the fund, she had nearly 12 years of experience working as an administrator at the NCAA national office. She joined the NCAA in 1999 as the director of the NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball Championship and in 2002 she moved into the same position of the men’s championship. The majority of her tenure with the NCAA saw her as vice president of Division I women’s basketball, which began in 2003. She currently serves on the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame Board of Directors.
Before joining the NCAA, Donohoe served as the assistant and later associate commissioner of the Southland Conference. She moved to the Southland in 1998 after holding the position of associate director of athletics at the University of Arkansas where she was previously the assistant women’s basketball coach. She also was assistant women’s coach at Stephen F. Austin State University and a teacher coach at Lake Highlands High School (Richardson, Texas) and Carthage High School (Carthage, Texas). Her start in athletics came as a graduate assistant women’s basketball coach at Louisiana Tech University in 1981.
Donohoe will be formally honored during the 2019 WBCA Convention that will be held in conjunction with the NCAA Women’s Final Four in Tampa Bay, Florida.
“The Jostens-Berenson Lifetime Achievement Award honors legends who have invested their lives to impact the student-athlete and ultimately elevate the game of women’s basketball. No one is more deserving of it than Sue Donohoe,” said Danielle Donehew, executive director of the WBCA. “Sue is a servant-leader, former coach, mentor and highly gifted administrator who has demonstrated a profound dedication to our sport. Her talents, wisdom, strength, compassion and vast experience have been built over a lifetime serving the sport, the student-athlete, and all those around her. She is respected and trusted by all. The game is in a better place thanks to Sue’s tireless efforts.”
The Jostens-Berenson Lifetime Achievement Award is named in honor of the late Senda Berenson, who in her role as a physical education instructor at Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts, introduced “basketball” to her female gym students in 1892. Her actions marked the birth of the women’s game, occurring the year following basketball’s invention by James Naismith in Springfield, Massachusetts.
The award has been presented annually since 1984 and is sponsored by Jostens, a longtime corporate partner of and the official commemorative awards provider for the WBCA. Until 2006, it was called the Jostens-Berenson Service Award.
“Jostens is proud to be a longtime partner of the WBCA on such a prestigious award,” said Chris Poitras, Jostens vice president and COO, college, sports, specialty. “Ms. Donohoe’s service to women’s basketball and the WBCA has been remarkable, and we are honored to recognize her as a very deserving recipient for this incredible achievement.”
Visit www.wbca.org/recognize/ to see a list of past recipients.
Jostens is a trusted partner in the academic and achievement channel, providing products, programs and services that help its customers celebrate moments that matter. The company's products include yearbooks, publications, jewelry and consumer goods that serve the K-12 educational, college and professional sports segments. Founded in 1897 and based in Minneapolis, Minn., Jostens is owned by Platinum Equity and can be found online at www.jostens.com.
About the WBCA
Founded in 1981, the Women's Basketball Coaches Association is the professional association for coaches of women's and girls' basketball at all levels of competition. The WBCA offers educational resources that coaches need to help make themselves better leaders, teachers and mentors to their players; provides opportunities for coaches to connect with peers in the profession; serves as the unifying voice of a diverse community of coaches to the organizations that control the game; and celebrates those coaches, players and other individuals who excel each year and contribute to the advancement of the sport. Visit www.WBCA.org for more details about the Association.