Leah McCormack

Vice President of Eligibility Services and Business Development, NAIA

Award: Emerging Leader Award
Winner: Leah McCormack

Leah McCormack joined the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) during the Eligibility Center’s inaugural year, helping to open the center as a Manager of Eligibility in 2010. She was instrumental in the creation of numerous policies and oversight of international eligibility. In 2012, Leah published the NAIA International Standards and in 2014 launched InCred, a credential evaluation service dedicated to assisting NAIA and NJCAA admissions directors and registrars in evaluation of international students. She ascended to the role of Director of the NAIA Eligibility Center in 2014. 

In 2017, Leah was named Vice President of Eligibility Services, overseeing the day-to-day operations of the center. She oversees 14 full-time and 30 seasonal team members, employing her business acumen and leadership skills. 

Before joining the NAIA, Leah worked in finance as well as community literacy on the One Book, One Chicago and America Reads Tudors programs in Chicago. Leah earned an M.B.A. with a focus in managing and leading people from the UMKC Bloch School and a Bachelor’s degree in anthropology from DePaul University. 

She is active on committees with Women Leaders in College Sports, serves as the AACRAO Annual Meeting Program Committee Coordinator for International Programming, is a published contributor and frequent presenter on international student-athlete topics for AACRAO, and remains active in Kansas City’s entrepreneurial community as a mentor for the Regnier Institute’s E-Scholar program. 

Leah has led the NAIA in efforts to re-engage their Registrar's Association, which holds their annual business meeting at AACRAO each year. Her commitment to AACRAO even in the short while that she has been involved is pronounced. She has authored a chapter in the AACRAO International Guide, served as Professional Activities Committee Chair for International Admissions for several years before joining the Program Committee. She has led the NAIA and AACRAO to collaborate in various ways culminating in a recent formal partnership with InCred. Her expertise in the field of international education has been markedly formed by her continued involvement in AACRAO professional development activities. 

Leah is an emerging leader who has made an early mark on the profession with a commitment and passion to improve higher education.
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