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Women to lead CIAA


CHARLOTTE – The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) and their Sports Information Directors Association (SIDA) recently conducted its biennial election of officers, which produced historic results. Jolisa Williams of Shaw University and Romanda Noble-Watson of Claflin University were re-elected as president and secretary, respectively, while Oralia Washington of Johnson C. Smith University was voted in as the new vice president.

Oralia Washington, vice president
This marks the first time in CIAA history that its SIDA will have all women concurrently serving in each position, becoming the only Division II conference to feature such a distinction in the process. All three women will serve in their respective roles through the 2021-2022 athletic year. Additionally, Williams, Noble-Watson, and Washington highlight three of the five women currently serving as sports information directors at CIAA member institutions, a total that also leads all Division II conferences.

“The CIAA and its membership continue to be champions for access and opportunity at every level, which is evident through our leadership structure and throughout the conference. We are committed to planting seeds, promoting our women coaches, administrators, and student-athletes to seek leadership opportunities throughout the college landscape and the actions of our sports information directors association is the latest representation of that commitment,” stated CIAA Commissioner Jacqie McWilliams.

Serving as CIAA-SIDA president since 2017, Williams enters her fifth year at Shaw University as the Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations. The Charles City, VA native is responsible for coordinating media relations, marketing, and social media visibility for all 13 of Shaw’s athletic programs while also spearheading efforts behind the Shaw Bears Sports Network and launching a completely revamped athletics website.

Jolisa Williams, president
Williams is a two-time CIAA John Holley Sports Information Director of the Year recipient and, as CIAA-SIDA president, serves on the CIAA Management Council. Williams is a member of College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) and Black College Sports Information Directors Association (BC-SIDA) and most recently a grant recipient of the NCAA DII Woman Leaders X. Noble-Watson is in her seventh year as the Sports Information Director at Claflin University and begins her second term as CIAA-SIDA secretary. She joined the university’s athletic administrative team in 2014 after 17 years at NCAA Division I programs.

A native of Washington, D.C., Noble-Watson was also recently selected as secretary for D2SIDA and received the Women Leaders in College Sports Pioli Family Endowed HBCU Membership Scholarship. She is a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., the Black College Sports Information Directors Association (BCSIDA), Women Sports Information Directors of America (formerly FAME), Women Leaders in College Sports and College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), where she is a member of the Special Awards Committee and a mentor in the CoSIDA Mentorship Program.

Washington is currently in her second year at Johnson C. Smith University after spending the previous three years as Sports Information Director at Livingstone College. She is responsible for media coverage, game operations, and maintaining statistical information for JCSU’s 15 sports teams and the athletics department.

Romanda Noble-Watson, secretary
A native of Dillwyn, Va., Washington holds memberships in the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA), the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics (NACDA), Black College Sports Information Directors Association (BCSIDA) and the Minority Opportunities Athletics Association (MOAA). She is also a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and the Order of the Eastern Star.