MIT's Jessica Duff named assistant athletic director

Jessica Duff becomes assistant athletic director at Bates College in September 2019. (Courtesy of MIT)

LEWISTON, Maine -- Bates College Director of Athletics Jason Fein today announced the appointment of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's Jessica Duff as assistant athletic director, effective in September. Duff will oversee student athlete services and internal operations for the department.

"We are thrilled that Jess Duff will be joining our team this fall," said Fein. "Her experience and commitment to Division III as a student-athlete, administrator and staffer at the NCAA will certainly benefit the entire Bates community. She has extensive experience in creating student-athlete leadership development programs, something which will help enhance the student-athlete experience at Bates, as well as our partnerships across campus and in the community."

Duff has served as special assistant to MIT Director of Athletics Julie Soriero for the past two years, following previous athletic administration positions at the NCAA national office and at Mount Holyoke College.

At MIT, Duff took on a variety of roles within a large and successful Division III athletic program. She served as co-director of the Student-Athlete Leadership Program and oversaw the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee; was a co-lead of the MIT LGBTQ+ Employee Resource Group; and is a member of the NCAA Common Ground Leadership Team. Duff provided the MIT athletic director with complex administrative support, and planned, facilitated, and coordinated special projects and strategies for implementation, including but not limited to: strategic planning, external communications, development and fundraising, and student-athlete development. In 2018 she was co-recipient of the Division of Student Life Infinite Mile Award of Building Community: Inclusion and Diversity Award.

"I would first like to thank Jason Fein and the entire search committee for the opportunity to serve as the Assistant Athletic Director of Student Athlete Services and Internal Operations; and a special thank you to my colleagues at MIT, especially Julie Soriero," Duff said. "I am honored and excited to join the Bates athletics community, one that has a long-standing commitment to student-athlete development, civic engagement, and social justice. I am looking forward to helping build on the successes of the department and to fostering new campus partnerships."

Duff worked at the NCAA in Indianapolis as assistant coordinator of the Office of Inclusion from 2016 to 2017, after serving as a postgraduate intern for Division III Governance in 2015-16.

During her time with the NCAA, Duff collaborated with the NCAA Division III core staff in assisting with the support and communication of the membership's 15+ decision-making bodies. Her wide range of duties also included working with key leadership to advance strategic initiatives, identity platforms and web-based communications for Division III. Duff also assisted in the implementation of the Emerging Leaders Seminar, the DIII Advancement Forum, the DIII Faculty Athletic Representatives (FAR) Institute, the New Athletic Director Orientation and the Student-Athlete Leadership Forum. Duff was also the lead for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award, which recognizes the top female student-athletes in the NCAA at all divisions for their achievement in academics, athletics, service and leadership.

A varsity basketball and volleyball player while an undergraduate student at Wellesley College, Duff earned her bachelor's degree in women's studies at Wellesley, and went on to earn a master's degree in education from Tufts. She worked as a women's basketball graduate assistant at Tufts University from 2009-12, as well as an assistant coach for one season at UMass Boston and two years as the Assistant to the Director of Athletics at Mount Holyoke College. During her stint at Mount Holyoke from 2013-15, Duff was also the Fitness Center Director and was an assistant basketball coach.