CLEVELAND – The National Association of Academic and Student-Athlete Development Professionals (N4A) recognized UMKC Deputy Director of Athletics/SWA Ursula Gurney with the Distinguished Service Award at the N4A Convention on Tuesday.
The Distinguished Service Award is a prestigious honor that is presented annually to a N4A member who has met certain qualifications and demonstrated exceptional ability in a variety of areas. These include continuous membership of N4A for five years, leadership in N4A at the regional or national level and contributions above and beyond the normal service required by positions of leadership.
“Ursula’s passion and long-standing dedication of service to her profession, student-athletes, coaches and administrators, exemplifies why she is so deserving of this recognition,” said Director of Athletics Carla Wilson. “To be acknowledged by a national organization of your peers is a testament that you are the best of the best, and I couldn’t agree more. I congratulate Ursula on behalf of the entire UMKC Athletics family.”
Gurney earned her B.A. degree in History from Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia, in 2000. She then went on to earn her master's degree in History from SFU in 2002. Athletically, Gurney swam competitively at the national level in Canada participating in several National Championships, Olympic and Commonwealth Games Trials. Prior to her work in Kansas City, Gurney spent seven years at The Ohio State University.
Gurney was named the SWA in May of 2014 as well as being promoted to the Senior Associate Athletics Director for Internal Operations. Prior to her appointment, she was the Senior Associate AD for Academics and Strategic Initiatives.
Gurney is an active member of N4A and Women Leaders in College Sports. She has presented multiple times at N4A's national and regional conferences. She has served on N4A's Board of Directors since 2012, and is a current member of N4A's Strategic Planning Committee. In 2015, she was awarded N4A’s Lan Hewlett Award, an honor presented to those who demonstrate an unyielding commitment to the profession. She currently serves on the NCAA Committee on Academics, and the WAC’s Academic and Governance Committee. Between 2011 and 2013 she was a member of the NCAA Division I Recruiting and Athletics Personnel Issues Cabinet. She is a graduate of Women Leaders 2012 Leadership Enhancement Institute (LEI), the 2010 West Institute for Administrative Advancement (IAA), and a 2009 graduate of the N4A's Professional Development Institute (PDI) Leader/Manager Track.
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