Bethany Ellis Named Director of Athletics; Chair of PERA at Wellesley College

Bethany Ellis will join Wellesley on July 1, 2019 (TDM Photography).
Bethany Ellis will join Wellesley on July 1, 2019 (TDM Photography).

WELLESLEY, Mass. -- Bethany Ellis has been named Director of Athletics and Chair of the Department of Physical Education, Recreation, and Athletics (PERA) at NCAA Division III Wellesley College in Wellesley, Mass. Ellis will officially join the Wellesley community on July 1, 2019.

Ellis comes to Wellesley from Boston University, where she was hired as an Associate Athletic Director in 2014 and has served as Senior Associate Director of Athletics for Student Athlete Development since 2015. Ellis received her B.A. in Psychology from Yale University in 2002 and a Masters in Education from Providence College in 2005. She started her career as head women's basketball coach at Johnson and Wales University, before moving to become Director of Basketball Operations at Providence College and Associate Director of Athletics and Senior Woman Administrator at Assumption College.

"I want to thank Provost Shennan, President Johnson, and the search committee for their support and this incredible opportunity, said Ellis. "Wellesley is not only a storied and prestigious institution, but also a dynamic place that is well-positioned to excel in the NEWMAC and simultaneously be a national model for wellness and leadership development."

Throughout her career, working at all three NCAA levels, Ellis has distinguished herself by her passionate advocacy for the role of athletics as part of students' overall educational experience and by her commitment to women's wellness and leadership development. Her portfolio at Division I Boston University has been broad, encompassing oversight of six varsity programs, student-athlete support services, strength and conditioning, and the department's leadership academy.

At BU, Ellis also served as a University Deputy Title IX coordinator as well as athletic's liaison to admissions and athletic training services, while representing the department on on campus committees, including the Transgender Working Group, and Student Affairs Leadership Forums.

"Bethany is superbly qualified to build on the strong foundation that Bridget Belgiovine has established here, in partnership with colleagues across the Wellesley campus, to lead the department to new levels of athletic success, integrated support for student wellness, and inclusive excellence," said Andrew Shennan, Provost and Dean of Wellesley College. "She will bring enormous energy and fresh perspective to this critical position."

As a member of the Senior Management Team at Assumption, Ellis directly supervised nine sports while serving as a member of the strategic planning team. She served as NCAA Compliance supervisor, SAAC Advisor, Title IX Coordinator, and as the athletics liaison to admissions.

Prior to arriving at Assumption, Ellis spent two years as Director of Basketball operations at Providence College, returning to the program where she had completed her graduate assistantship in 2005. Between her time at Providence, Ellis was the head women's basketball coach at Johnson and Wales, earning Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Coach of the Year honors in 2006. In addition to her coaching duties at Johnson & Wales, she also served as the athletics department's community service liaison, coordinating activities that included programming with nearby elementary schools.

"I am both excited and humbled to lead PERA and am extraordinarily grateful to Bridget Belgiovine for laying such a strong foundation," said Ellis. "I look forward to collaborating with the Wellesley community and am excited to get started."

A native of Harmon, Ill., Ellis resides in Melrose with her wife, Caroline, and their daughter, Lucy, and sons, Arthur and Grant.

What They Are Saying About Bethany Ellis:

Drew Marrochello, Director of Athletics, Boston University

"We were very fortunate to have Bethany in her role at Boston University over the past five years, as she spearheaded many critical initiatives that positively impacted our students, coaches and staff. Bethany does a great job of prioritizing the student-athlete experience and her leadership qualities will be a perfect fit for the Blue. Simply put, Wellesley made a fantastic choice, and we are thrilled for Bethany and her family." 

Patrick Summers, Executive Director, New England Women's & Men's Athletic Conference:

"It is my distinct pleasure to welcome and congratulate Bethany Ellis as the next Wellesley College Director of Athletics and Chair of the Department of Physical Education, Recreation and Athletics. Bethany brings extensive experience across all three NCAA Divisions and has been a constant champion and advocate for the well-being of student-athletes and the integration of athletics as a co-curricular experience throughout her career. I am excited to begin working with Bethany as she leads Wellesley Athletics into its new chapter."

Martha Dietrick, Associate Director for Finance & Personnel

"Bethany's clearly a team builder who values an environment of trust, inclusion and innovation.  Her commitment to Physical Education, Recreation and Athletics as a part of a liberal arts education will benefit all of Wellesley College's students.  PERA is excited to have Bethany as the next Chair/Director." 

Jennifer Kroll, Head Basketball Coach; PERA Associate Professor of the Practice

"Bethany impressed the search committee with her experience at all levels of collegiate athletics as an administrator, coach and student-athlete. Her understanding of the unique path of Wellesley student-athletes and their desire to succeed in the classroom as well on the field, court, pool, track or in the boat, will serve PERA well into the future."

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Wellesley Athletics strives for excellence at the conference, regional, and national levels, while providing opportunities for students to achieve their potential and learn the values of discipline, leadership, critical thinking, and responsibility to oneself and others.