ATHENS, Ga. — The University of Georgia Athletic Association has appointed Dr. Courtney Gay as Assistant Athletic Director for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. In this newly-created role, Gay will be responsible for developing and implementing diversity, equity, and inclusion strategies for department performance in Diversity and Inclusive Excellence.
“Early this summer, we made it clear that we wanted to respond to our social issues by using our platform to educate ourselves, elevate and affect change with real action, “J. Reid Parker Director of Athletics Greg McGarity said. “I am excited about strengthening that commitment by appointing Dr. Gay to continue to chart the course for us. She helped us navigate some very challenging conversations regarding race, identity, and belonging over the summer and fall. She demonstrated passion, enthusiasm, and strong competence. She will help the Athletic Association create and execute a sustainable action plan that promotes inclusion, develops cultural competence, and equips our coaches and staff with the skills and tools to lead successfully for DEI.”
With a wealth of knowledge and experience already under her belt, Gay earned her Doctorate in Counseling and Student Personnel Services from Georgia in 2018. Her research focused on engaging student-athletes in social justice issues. She has served as an Academic Counselor at UGA since 2012 and added the role of Diversity and Inclusion Strategist in July 2019.
She has been a vital asset to the academic success of student-athletes and contributed to student development efforts to enhance personal, career, and leadership programs. This includes the development and implementation of First and Ten, an academic, personal, and leadership development program for African-American football student-athletes on top of programs like Arch Prep, a freshmen transition program. Furthermore, Gay has been a leader in serving UGAAA in developing DEI initiatives.
Now Gay will shift her focus to strategic analysis and planning, education and programming, and collaboration and strategic partnerships to align with the University of Georgia’s commitment to excellence in diversity, equity, and inclusion.
“I am honored and grateful for the opportunity to serve the Athletic Association in this exciting, new leadership role,” Dr. Gay said. “Our nation is at a crossroads as we seek to address a variety of social issues, and I am inspired by the commitment and enthusiasm that Athletic Director Greg McGarity, our leadership team, coaches, staff, and student-athletes have shown toward enhancing our diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts and ensuring that the UGA Athletic Association is taking actionable steps to create change. I look forward to continuing to work alongside them and our campus and community partners as we seek innovative ways to make a meaningful and sustainable impact.”
For more information about Georgia’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion initiatives please visit georgiadogs.com/diversity.