Schuemann becomes the first female director of athletics in the history of FPU, or any four-year university in Fresno, and presently the only female director of athletics in the Pacific West Conference. She has served as the department's senior associate athletics director since July 2012, overseeing day-to-day operations.
"Leslie Schuemann has provided stable leadership to the department of athletics in a time of transition and significant change," said FPU President Pete Menjares, Ph.D. "I have come to deeply appreciate Leslie's leadership abilities, personal and professional values, and commitment to care for the coaches, staff and student-athletes that make up this great department. I am truly grateful for her leadership."
"I want to thank President Menjares for this incredible opportunity," said Schuemann. "It has been a privilege to serve the student-athletes and staff for the last year and a half and I am excited to move forward in the role of director of athletics. I have been very fortunate in my career to have amazing mentors, role models and experiences that have prepared me to serve FPU in this new capacity."
Schuemann was a leader in the university's acceptance into provisional NCAA membership last July after successful completion of year two of the three-year NCAA Division II membership process. Locally her heart for serving the Fresno community and the Central Valley has led to a surge in community service by FPU student-athletes. In her first year Schuemann's initiatives led to nearly 2,500 hours of service, as well as partnerships with organizations such as Special Olympics, Community Food Bank, Valley Children's Hospital, Toys for Tots and the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
The department has also ushered in new strategies in fundraising and media communications. Since Schuemann's arrival, membership in the university's Sunbird Association booster club has tripled while the department has seen a 200 percent increase in annual giving. FPU athletics has also vastly expanded its global reach through the avenues of social media, expanding its online presence to one of the largest in the nation at the Division II level. Student and fan involvement at home events also continues to grow rapidly.
Prior to FPU, Schuemann spent five years at the NCAA's national office as the assistant director of academic and membership affairs. During this time she was instrumental in the formation of the current NCAA Division II membership process. In addition to her senior role with the NCAA Division II Membership Committee, Schuemann oversaw the Division II NCAA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
Before the NCAA, Schuemann was at NCAA Division II Texas A&M Kingsville for eight years, five years as the assistant athletic director for compliance and senior woman administrator and three as an academic advisor. She holds bachelor's and master's degrees from Texas A&M Kingsville.
More on this story at fpuathletics.com/news/2014/1/13/BB_0113142526.aspx