MADISON, Wis.--The Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) announced last week that Danielle Harris has been selected to succeed Gary Karner, who is retiring following a 24-year tenure, as the WIAC commissioner. Harris will assume the position effective July 1.
The WIAC competes at the NCAA Division III level and consists of nine University of Wisconsin-System institutions-- UW-River Falls, UW-Eau Claire, UW-La Crosse, UW-Oshkosh, UW-Platteville, UW-Stevens Point, UW-Stout, UW-Superior and UW-Whitewater. Finlandia University (Mich.) is also a member of the conference in baseball while Northland College competes in men’s and women’s hockey.
Harris comes to the WIAC after serving as the Associate Commissioner of the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) since 2013. At the GLIAC, Harris oversaw the sports of men’s/women’s basketball, men’s/women’s soccer, softball, track and volleyball. She also played a key role in conference governance, compliance, championships and student-athlete welfare.
Prior to the GLIAC, Harris served as an athletic coordinator at Cleveland State University. She earned her B.S. from Bowling Green University and her M.A. in sports management from Kent State University in 2005 and 2009, respectively.
“I look forward to continuing to build upon the tradition of success that Gary Karner has established in the WIAC over the past two decades,” Harris said. “The conference has been a Division III trailblazer both academically and athletically. It is an honor to be selected as your next commissioner. I am excited about collaborating with the league presidents, athletic administrators, coaches, student-athletes and alumni on branding the conference with student-athlete centered initiatives both nationally and internationally.”
“We value the long legacy retiring Commissioner, Gary Karner, has provided and feel he has left our conference in the position to build on a prestigious foundation for years to come,” said UW-Oshkosh Chancellor Andrew Leavitt, co-chair of the WIAC search committee. “We are pleased to have on-board Danielle Harris as the new Commissioner, and looking forward to her continuing to enhance our student-athlete experiences.”