NEW YORK - The first session of 2013 edition of The Center for Coaching Excellence concluded on Wednesday, June 5 as 32 head college women's basketball coaches completed the invitation-only, two-and-a-half day elite leadership program.

"We are so proud to be hosting year three of The Center for Coaching Excellence at Columbia," said Dr. M. Dianne Murphy, Director, Intercollegiate Athletics and Physical Education at Columbia University.  "This unique leadership program continues to make a tremendous difference for the sport of college women’s basketball and the men and women who lead and coach our student-athletes. It is great to continue our partnership with the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) and the NCAA."

Capitalizing on the resources of Columbia University, one of the world's leading research universities, and the WBCA, The Center for Coaching Excellence provides an unparalleled, exclusive learning experience. Utilizing collaborative and interactive learning sessions along with lectures and panel discussions featuring experts in college athletics, The Center for Coaching Excellence gives college women's basketball coaches valuable networking opportunities with their peers and top industry leaders.

"Nothing revitalizes me more than attending one of our sessions of The Center for Coaching Excellence," said WBCA CEO Beth Bass.  "Spending time with these outstanding WBCA coaches and seeing them learn and expand their skill set is second to none. I didn’t think it was possible, but we’ve made a fantastic program even better."

“I learned so much about myself through The Center for Coaching Excellence,” remarked Bobbie Kelsey, Head Women’s Basketball Coach, University of Wisconsin. “I thought I knew a lot about communication, and through this program, I realized my areas for improvement and exactly how vital communication is to maximizing your student-athletes’ potential.  The Center for Coaching Excellence was enlightening.  Knowing yourself, and your personal communication style is so important.  Every head women’s basketball coach, particularly the coaches that are first-time head coaches, should have an opportunity to attend The Center for Coaching Excellence.

“Dianne [Murphy]and Cathie [Siders] have created a learning experience that is unparalleled for head coaches in the game of college women's basketball,” said Joe Tartamella, Head Women’s Basketball Coach, St. John’s University. “The Center for Coaching Excellence is the best professional development program I have been a part of in my ten years of coaching. This program assures that the leaders in our game have the learning tools to grow as mentors, professionals and people. I would recommend that every head coach in our game have the opportunity to experience this invaluable program.”

Dr. Cathie T. Siders, a clinical psychologist, organizational consultant and executive coach, facilitated group-learning sessions. Other sessions featured panel discussions from a wide variety of leaders from both the college athletics industry and other sectors of industry.

"For the third consecutive year, I am thrilled to work with the exceptional women and men that steward the game of college women’s basketball,” said Dr. Siders. "I find our nation's college women's basketball head coaches to be wonderful teachers and mentors, who are committed to the young women on their teams.  These coaches appreciate refining their leadership skills to add to their coaching repertoire."

The Center for Coaching Excellence is very thankful for the tremendous generosity of our friends at the NCAA for enabling us to continue this most important leadership initiative,” added Dr. Murphy. “Over the past three days, our basketball coaches have addressed and discussed many of the important topics facing the game of college women’s basketball today. We know that the continual success of the game we love is in the very capable hands of our nation’s college women’s basketball coaches.”

Faculty of the June 3-5, 2013 session of The Center for Coaching Excellence included Anucha Browne, Vice President of Women’s Basketball Championships, NCAA; Val Ackerman, Strategic Consultant, NCAA and Faculty, Columbia University School of Continuing Education; Rich Ensor, Commissioner, Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference; Jeffrey H. Orleans, Consultant, Alden and Associates; Jody Conradt, Head Women’s Basketball Coach Emerita, University of Texas; Stephanie Glance, Head Women’s Basketball Coach, Columbia University; Jim Jabir, Head Women’s Basketball Coach, University of Dayton; Charli Turner Thorne, Head Women’s Basketball Coach, Arizona State University; Jim Delany, Commissioner, Big Ten Conference; Rebecca Halstead, Brigadier General, US Army (Ret.).