A New Agenda (1980-1990). (Celebrating the Past: A Century of Challenge, Part 8)

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Part VIII: A New Agenda (1980-1990)

This is the eighth of nine segments designed to commemorate the NAGWS Centennial, 1889-1999. This segment will focus on the accomplishments of ten past-presidents who served from 1980 to 1990. The 1980s saw a major setback to Title IX, when the Grove City College decision interpreted Title IX as applying only to the specific program or activity earmarked for federal assistance, and not to the institution or school as a whole (Mottinger, 1988). NAGWS actively lobbied for the passage of the Civil Rights Restoration Act. This act would reinterpret Title IX more broadly, as Congress had originally intended, prohibiting educational institutions from discriminating based on sex. In 1983, the NCAA co-opted the AIAW (which had been born from NAGWS in 1979) and began to oversee women's intercollegiate athletics. As the last AIAW presidents, the following individuals placed their mark on the shaping of women's intercollegiate athletics: Christine Grant (1980-1981), Donna Lopiano (1981-1982), Merrily Baker (1982-1983), and Virginia Hunt (1983 elect). With the NCAA takeover of intercollegiate sport for women, challenges continued for the control of the rules for girls' and women's sport. By the end of the 1980s, NAGWS stopped publishing the rules for women's basketball. The National Federation published the high school rules, while the NCAA published the collegiate rules (Hult, 1991). In 1983, NAGWS, the United States Olympic Committee (USOC), and the Women's Sports Foundation sponsored a major conference, "The New Agenda: A Blueprint for the Future of Women's Sports," which led to the creation of National Girls and Women in Sports Day. NAGWS continued its strong bond with the USOC and the National Governing Bodies. By the end of the decade, NAGWS was redefining its role in equity for girls and women in sport. With a steady decrease in the number of women in leadership positions in sport, NAGWS was ready to focus on increasing female leadership in the athletic arena. - Shawn Ladda, Manhattan College, Feature Editor.


Doris Corbett

Biography: Howard University

Accomplishments: Corbett facilitated international congresses, workshops, and clinics in Latin America and the Caribbean. These events focused on institutional curriculum development, sport specific clinics, and issues related specifically to women in sport. She also appointed the first minority representative to the NAGWS Executive Board (Corbett, personal communication, July 28, 1999).


Helen "Susie" Knierim

Biography: Slippery Rock University

Accomplishments: Met with the NCAA to negotiate the continuation of publication of the women's basketball rule books for at least one more year. Continued lobbying government to enforce Title IX, especially for schools with poor women's sports programs.


Bonnie Slatton

Biography: University of Iowa

Accomplishments: The first edition of the joint USA-Latin American/Caribbean Congress on Women and Sport was held at Temple University in May, 1982 ("Latin American Project," 1982, p. 1). The purpose of the Congress was to provide an opportunity for participants to exchange practical and scientific information that would be helpful in advancing women's sport in the Americas. The AIAW is co-opted by the NCAA, and NAGWS challenges the NCAA based on antitrust laws.


Jean Perry

Biography: University of Nevada-Reno

Accomplishments: "While we certainly have experienced a great increase in opportunities for girls and women to participate as athletes, the past ten years have shown an even more dramatic decrease in the number of women coaches, athletic administrators, and sports officials" (Perry, 1986, p. 33). Coaching institutes and leadership conferences were seen as a way to address this increasing problem. The New Agenda Conference was held November 3-6, 1983, in Washington, D. …