Beauregard lauded for lifetime of achievement and service

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Beauregard announcing WMU will join new National Collegiate Hockey Conference

KALAMAZOO--Western Michigan University athletic director Kathy Beauregard has been singled out by the YWCA of Kalamazoo for a lifetime achievement award that recognizes both her professional accomplishments and her service to her community.

Beauregard, who has served as WMU executive director of intercollegiate athletics since 1997, will be honored Thursday, May 17, as the winner of the 2012 YWCA Lifetime Woman of Achievement Award during a ceremony at the Kalamazoo Air Zoo. She is the 28th recipient of the annual award that honors the area's top women leaders in such areas as the arts, philanthropy, business, politics, education and public service.

"Kathy Beauregard's ground-breaking accomplishments in the field of athletics, typically dominated by men, show the strength of her leadership," said YWCA officials in announcing their selection of Beauregard. "Kathy's accomplishments bring recognition and attention to this community and Western Michigan University as environments that nurture young people to become successful citizens and leaders. As the executive director of intercollegiate athletics, Kathy Beauregard runs a successful program that instills the values of fairness and excellence on the field and in the classroom and service to the community."

Beauregard is the first woman to hold the position of athletic director at WMU. Nationally, she is among only five women, and the only one in Michigan, to hold the top athletic post in one of the 120 Football Bowl Schools that make up the top rung of collegiate athletics. Across all divisions of the National Collegiate Athletic Association--the NCAA-- only one in five athletic directors is a woman.

During her tenure as athletic director, WMU has maintained a sterling record of having no major violations of NCAA rules, making the University one of only 17 major athletic programs in the nation with such a record. Additionally, student athletes averaged a better than 3.0 GPA for 10 straight semesters, 24 Broncos have earned All-America status and 24 Bronco athletes have been named Academic All-Americans.

In 2011, Beauregard was selected by her peers to receive the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics Under Armour Athletic Director of the Year Award for WMU's region and division.

Her commitment to the Kalamazoo Community is evident through her volunteer service. She volunteers with the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, Big Brothers/Big Sisters, Girl Scouts Heart of Michigan and the Kalamazoo Rotary. In 1999, the Kalamazoo Network presented Beauregard with the "Glass Ceiling Award;" in 2000, she received the Hope College Distinguished Alumni Award; and in 2002, she received the Athena Award from the Kalamazoo Chamber of Commerce. The latter award recognizes an individual who provides service to the community, demonstrates excellence within their profession and assists women in attaining leadership skills and professionals goals.

Through her volunteer service, Beauregard has set an example for Bronco athletes to step up and serve the community. All 400 student-athletes and Bronco staff members volunteer in the community. During the 2010-11 academic year, the football squad devoted more than 6,000 hours to community service; the volleyball team served as host to a Girl Scouts Urban Adventure Day Camp on campus and the hockey team provided support to a local child who was battling cancer, prompting a blood drive organized by student athletes from multiple sports.

Beauregard earned her bachelor's degree from Hope College and her master's degree in athletic administration from WMU. She began her career coaching WMU gymnastics for nine years, leading the team to two conference championships. She was named Coach of the Year for the Mid-American Conference twice. Beauregard went on to become an associate athletic director and a senior associate athletic director before taking the reins of the division in 1997.

As the winner of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Beauregard joins past winners: Betty Lee C. Ongley, Elizabeth S. Upjohn Mason, Allene W. Dietrich, Georgia T. Dungy, N. Lorraine Beebe, Gayl Werme, Martha G. Parfet, Caroline R. Ham, Mary C. Brown, Beverly A. Moore, Jo Jacobs, Dr. Marilyn Schlack, Judy K. Maze, The Hon. Carolyn H. Williams, Anna Whitten, Ann Parfet, Suzanne Todd Shepherd, Barbara James, Eva L. Ozier, Mary Little Tyler, Judy Sarkozy, Marian G. Klein, Sister Elizabeth (Betty) Veenhuis, Marjorie Springgate, Dr. Martha B. Warfield, Patricia Coles-Chalmers and Dr. Eileen Wilson-Oyelaran.

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