Tamica Smith Jones Named Director of Athletics at UC Riverside

Senior Athletics Administrator to Move from Current Role at University of Texas, San Antonio

Tamica Smith Jones is the Director of Athletics at UC Riverside.

Tamica Smith Jones is the Director of Athletics at UC Riverside.

RIVERSIDE, CA, (www.ucr.edu) — UC Riverside Chancellor Kim A. Wilcox today announced the appointment of Tamica Smith Jones of the University of Texas at San Antonio as Director of Intercollegiate Athletics at UC Riverside, effective July 1, 2015.

A welcome reception has been set for 3 p.m. Tuesday, July 7 at the UCR Student Recreation Center.

Jones will step down from her current position as Senior Associate Athletic Director for Internal Affairs and Senior Woman Administrator at UTSA, where she is responsible for overseeing day-to-day operations of the athletic department, including coaches and student-athlete affairs, support staff, health & safety, Title IX/gender equity, diversity/inclusion, life skills and community engagement.

Jones has 15 years of experience working in collegiate athletics, and previously served as Athletic Director/Senior Woman Administrator at Clark Atlanta University after a stint there as the head volleyball coach. Previously she held similar positions at Morris Brown College and Savannah State University.

In recruiting for the position, Wilcox stressed the importance of finding a successful candidate who is an accomplished leader, is focused on student success, an effective recruiter, and someone who will build and maintain strong community ties.

“Tamica Smith Jones has dedicated her career to the success of student athletes, and her enthusiasm for UC Riverside and its mission will carry through in helping our Athletics program excel in coming years,” said Wilcox. “We are very pleased to have her steering our 17 women’s and men’s sports.

“At the same time, I want to express my gratitude to Janet Lucas, who as Interim Director provided great leadership and stability to UCR Athletics,” said Wilcox. Lucas will now continue on at UCR in her former role as Executive Associate Athletics Director and Senior Woman Administrator.

Jones said she is looking forward to being part of the Highlander sports community, and to success in recruitment of student athletes and coaches as well as in engaging the greater Riverside community.

“This decision has been bittersweet because I have enjoyed UTSA and embraced the City of San Antonio. I have expanded in many ways working with some great coaches and administrators – and been empowered by the guidance of my supervisor and mentor, Lynn Hickey. The student athlete engagement and success during my time at UTSA will be missed and treasured.

“But it’s a great time to be a Highlander with the progressive vision of Chancellor Kim Wilcox and the team he is strategically building to raise the University’s profile. UCR is a perfect fit for me at this time in my career and it was evident during my visit that the Chancellor, campus and community are ready to elevate athletics. With that said, this opportunity was too great for me to pass up. So, I want to thank Chancellor Wilcox and Vice Chancellor Ron Coley, along with the entire search advisory committee for believing in me and I look forward to getting to campus soon.”

The UC Riverside Highlanders compete in 17 sports at the NCAA Division I level, the highest level of collegiate competition in the country. UC Riverside is a member of the Big West Conference.

UC Riverside has made a splash on the national scene with NCAA post-season appearances in baseball, women’s basketball, women’s soccer, men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s cross country and men’s and women’s track and field. To learn the latest news about UCR Intercollegiate Athletics, check out the website at www.gohighlanders.com.

A native of Atlanta, Jones earned a basketball scholarship at Troy University in Alabama, and, after transferring, graduated with a B.S. in Business Management from Alabama A&M University, where she was both a basketball and cross-country scholarship athlete. She also holds a master’s in Public Administration from Savannah State University, and a PhD in Business Administration from Warren National University [formerly Kennedy Western University].

At UCR, her annual compensation will be $225,000.

In making the announcement, Wilcox thanked the members of an advisory committee assisting in the search process. Committee members were:

Ron Coley, UCR Vice Chancellor, Business and Administrative Services
Sharon Duffy, UCR Dean, University Extension
Chris Jensen, Attorney, Reynolds, Jensen & Swan, LLP and Chair, Highlander Athletics Association
Brenda Martinez, Former UCR Athlete and Track Star

Media Contact

Tel: (951) 827-4756
E-mail: john.warren@ucr.edu

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