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Nadja West appointed as independent Board of Governors member

Former U.S. Army surgeon general was first Black female lieutenant general

The NCAA Board of Governors has named Nadja West as one of its five independent members. West is a retired United States Army lieutenant general, former surgeon general of the U.S. Army and former commanding general of the U.S. Army Medical Command. On Aug. 1, she will begin serving a three-year board term, which can be renewed for an additional three years.

“I am honored to join the NCAA team and look forward to serving and assisting the Association in accomplishing its mission of taking care of our nation’s student-athletes,” West said.

She replaces Vivek Murthy, who stepped down as one of five independent members to become the U.S. surgeon general, a position he also held from 2014 to 2017.

West was the first Black female lieutenant general and the highest-ranking woman to graduate from the U.S. Military Academy. She also was the first Black surgeon general of the U.S. Army.

The independent members were added to the NCAA’s top governing board in 2019. The members were added to the committee of college and university presidents to provide increased objectivity and outside perspectives to college sports and higher education.

“We are grateful to have Nadja’s knowledge, experience and insights through her service on the board,” said John J. DeGioia, board chair and president of Georgetown. “Her medical expertise and her perspectives on issues facing higher education will be invaluable in guiding our work to support students engaged in intercollegiate athletics.”

West is a graduate of Army West Point, with a Bachelor of Science in engineering. She earned her medical degree from George Washington University School of Medicine in Washington, D.C.