Jennifer Cohen will serve as the University of Washington’s interim athletic director while the school searches for a full-time replacement for Scott Woodward, the school announced Tuesday.
Cohen, a UW employee since 1998, currently serves as senior associate athletic director and oversees the department’s development efforts, according to her UW bio. She worked closely with Woodward, who is leaving UW at the end of the month to become the athletic director at Texas A&M, and was the only UW staff member who accompanied Woodward in Boise during his pursuit of Huskies football coach Chris Petersen.
A native of Tacoma and a 1991 graduate of San Diego State University, Cohen begins her duties as interim athletic director on Feb. 1.
“With her years of experience as a senior administrator in our athletic department, Jen will provide excellent leadership as we undertake a national search for a new athletic director,” UW president Ana Mari Cauce wrote in an official statement. “She understands the needs of the department very well and has a birds-eye view of the challenges it faces, particularly at this time of escalating costs and finite revenues. Her work in managing major fundraising projects will serve her very well in this regard. We’re fortunate to have her able to step right into this role.”
More from UW’s official release:
Cohen, who has been with the UW for 15 years, currently oversees the athletic department’s development efforts. The football and baseball programs also report directly to her. A native of Tacoma, she joined the athletic department staff in 1998 as an assistant director of development before moving to the university’s central development office to focus on fundraising efforts on behalf of the office of undergraduate education. She also spent time with the UW’s regional gifts program before returning to athletics to oversee the department’s major gifts program.
Cohen and her team spearheaded the “Drive for Husky Stadium” campaign, in which the department raised over $50 million in gifts for the renovation of Husky Stadium, which was completed in August 2013. Cohen has also led development efforts for a number of other initiatives, including the renovation of Hec Edmundson Pavilion and the Conibear Shellhouse, the construction of the Dempsey Indoor Practice Facility, the Husky Legends Center, Husky Golf Center and various scholarship endowments.