The story below is courtesy of USA Wrestling, announcing the appointment of Columbia Alumna and current President of the Columbia College Alumni Association, Kyra Tirana Barry, as the Women's Wrestling Team Leader for the 2014 World Team.
Kyra Tirana Barry of New York, N.Y. has been named as the Team Leader for the 2014 U.S. Women's World Team by USA Wrestling, the national governing body for the sport in the United States.
Barry will serve as Team Leader at the 2014 World Championships in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, and will be on the Women's Team USA leadership staff throughout the four-year Olympic cycle.
"The renaissance of wrestling continues! Kyra Tirana Barry brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to our program. I am certain that the U.S. women's effort and the entire organization will significantly benefit from her leadership," said USA Wrestling Executive Director Rich Bender.
"It is an honor to support our women wrestlers and help them achieve their full potential. There is great opportunity right now for women's wrestling in the United States and across the globe. The United States' women's wrestling program will be the best in in the world. The more successful the US women are internationally, the better is it for women and girls and the growth of this great sport" said Barry.
"She brings a new energy into our women's program. Kyra has a strength of character and commitment, which is important for our women athletes to see. She has many great ideas and a vision for women's wrestling in the future," said National Women's Coach Terry Steiner.
Barry serves as President of the Board of Beat the Streets, Inc. in New York City, which uses wrestling to develop the full potential of urban youth. Barry has played a key role in the recent restructuring and growth of the Beat the Streets program, and has taken leadership in the establishment of its women's program. In cooperation with New York City's schools, the girls program has become the first all-girls freestyle wrestling league in the nation, and is in its second season.
She has been involved in wrestling for much of her life, as a wife and parent of wrestlers. She helped establish the wrestling recreation program in Hoboken, N.J., which is conducted at the Edge Hoboken wrestling club there.
Her husband David Barry served as Greco-Roman Team Leader during the 2009-2012 Olympic quadrennium and was named USA Wrestling Man of the Year in 2012.
"I have a passion and firm belief that wrestling provides opportunities for every child. This position gives me the opportunity to advocate for women's wrestling on the local, national and Olympic levels. That is my focus as Team Leader," she said.
Barry was a member of the founding women's varsity soccer team at Columbia University, and remains an active soccer player, continuing to compete in leagues and tournaments. She is a member of the US Soccer Foundation's NY Leadership Council.
She currently serves as President of the Columbia College Alumni Association, the first woman to lead this important organization. She is also a member of the Columbia College Board of Visitors. Barry received her BA in Urban Studies from Columbia University's Columbia College in 1987 as a member of the first fully co-ed class.
She spent over a decade in public transportation policy and government relations at the US Congress, NYC Mayor's Office, NY Metropolitan Transportation Authority, and NJ Department of Transportation.
She has served on the boards of All Saints Episcopal School, Hoboken and Village Community School, NYC and has led capital campaign and annual fundraising programs in both the education and sporting areas.
Kyra and her husband David Barry have three children, Olivia, Jake and Charley.