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NCAA President’s Pat Summitt Award

Named in recognition of Pat Summitt, the award recognizes an individual in the Association’s membership who has demonstrated devotion to the development of college athletes and has made a positive impact on their lives. It was established in 2017 by NCAA President Mark Emmert.

Award recipients are selected annually by the NCAA president and will receive a $10,000 honorarium to donate to the organization of the honoree’s choice that combats or researches neurological diseases of the brain.

Summitt was the women’s basketball head coach at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, from 1974 to 2012. She amassed a record 1,098 wins, eight NCAA championships and 32 Southeastern Conference titles. A five-time Naismith Coach of the Year, she also served as an associate athletics director at Tennessee and a member of the board of directors for the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame.

Off the court, Summitt saw every student-athlete she coached who completed eligibility earn an undergraduate degree — gaining for her program a 100 percent Graduation Success Rate throughout her career.

In August 2011, Summitt announced that she had been diagnosed with early onset dementia, and in November 2011, she created the Pat Summitt Foundation Fund, with proceeds going toward research for cognitive diseases. In 2012, President Barack Obama presented Summitt with the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Summitt died in June 2016.

2018 Pat Summitt Award Recipient: Julie Soriero

Julie Soriero, athletics director at MIT, is be the 2018 recipient of the NCAA President’s Pat Summitt Award, making her the first Division III administrator and second person overall to receive the honor.

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2017 Pat Summitt Award Recipient: Joan Cronan

Joan Cronan, former women’s athletics director at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has been named the first recipient of the newly established NCAA President’s Pat Summitt Award.

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