According to espn.com, Vanderbilt University recently announced that Candice Storey Lee, a former standout student-athlete and three-time Vanderbilt graduate, has been named Vice Chancellor for Athletics and University Affairs and Athletic Director at Vanderbilt after serving in the role on a temporarily since February 2020.
Lee is Vanderbilt’s first female athletic director and the first African American woman to head a Southeastern Conference (SEC) athletics program. The permanent hire places her in the top tier of college athletics as one of only five women currently leading a “Power 5” program.
“Candice is perfectly positioned to lead our athletics program to new heights of success on and off the field of play. She has the drive, creativity and perseverance to help elevate our student-athletes and the entire Vanderbilt Athletics program,” said Incoming Vanderbilt Chancellor Daniel Diermeier.
Lee has served as an integral leader at the university and in Athletics for almost 20 years. Prior to becoming interim athletic director, she served as deputy athletic director, a role she was appointed to in 2016. Lee was also a captain on Vanderbilt’s women’s basketball team, graduating in 2000.
To quote from ESPN:
“It’s really interesting and humbling to hear words like pioneer and trailblazer, and I appreciate that. I know it’s significant, and it just reminds me of the responsibility that lies ahead,” Lee said on Freddie and Fitzsimmons on ESPN Radio on Thursday night. “I want to do a great job for all the people that I’m working with and for, but I also want to make sure that I’m not a deterrent when there are other opportunities presented to other people of color and other women and other people who are deserving of opportunities.
“There are a lot of people out there that just need a chance, and so if part of this can mean that there are more opportunities to come for others? I’m really excited about that.”