Traci Corey Receives Commendation for Commitment to Empowerment of Young Women

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President Steven M. Corey, Ph.D., Presidential Spouse Traci D. Corey, Thomas E. Kolassa ’69, chair, Board of Trustees (L to R).

Traci Corey, presidential spouse of The University of Olivet, has been honored by the school’s Board of Trustees for her commitment to the empowerment of young women with a Resolution of Gratitude and Commendation. The commendation was presented to Corey at the May 19 board meeting.

“Traci Corey has a passion for developing young women as leaders that knows no bounds,” said Kelly Rossman-McKinney, APR, The University of Olivet Board of Trustees member and CEO and principal of Truscott Rossman “She is driven with a deep commitment and relentless energy and enthusiasm for the young women who are already Olivet students – and the younger women we hope will become our students. Through Traci’s efforts, women leaders from across the state have come to Olivet to share their skills and talents.”

Corey selflessly and enthusiastically agreed to chair the The University of Olivet Presidential Women’s Leadership Initiative, an effort to advance the school’s priority to strengthen and enhance the leadership knowledge, skills and abilities of The University of Olivet female students and prospective students. Although significant progress has been made in closing the leadership gap in the U.S., more work must be done to ensure parity between men and women, and The University of Olivet – under the leadership of Corey – is committed to closing the leadership gap one leader, one woman, at a time.

Through Corey’s leadership, the overwhelmingly successful first The University of Olivet Cultivating Women Leaders event on March 3, 2017, engaged top women leaders, attracted significant financial support, and provided powerful leadership development experiences for more than 300 current and prospective students. Planning is already underway for the March 2, 2018 event, with Corey once again leading the charge.

“Traci Corey is quick to credit the team for the successes of the Cultivating Women Leaders event, but her inspirational and fiercely positive leadership was absolutely key to its success,” said The University of Olivet Provost and Dean Maria Davis, Ph.D. “She is an exceptional role model for other leaders and for aspiring leaders. I am pleased and proud to call her my colleague and my friend.”

The Resolution of Gratitude and Commendation honors Corey for her “inspiration, perspiration, and dedication”:

Resolution of Gratitude and Commendation

Traci D. Corey

Whereas, Traci D. Corey has committed many years of service to the growth and development of young women through the sport of volleyball at the youth, high school, club, and collegiate level; and

Whereas, she spent years in service to the betterment of her local and statewide communities during her time with the Yavapai County affiliate of the Arizona Community Foundation; and

Whereas, she has mentored, nurtured, and aided in the growth and development of numerous women within the The University of Olivet student body throughout her service as presidential spouse; and

Whereas, she has made it a priority to build strong relationships with the spouses and partners of alumni, friends, donors, and members of the board of The University of Olivet; and

Whereas, a presidential priority of The University of Olivet has been to strengthen and enhance the leadership knowledge, skills, and abilities of The University of Olivet students for the betterment of themselves, other students, and the communities and organizations in which they serve; and

Whereas, recognizing the unique history and legacy that The University of Olivet holds as the first college in Michigan to admit women and people of color on a coequal basis with white men and with its first graduating class wholly comprised of three women; and

Whereas, a presidential initiative was commissioned to direct this priority on leadership with the college’s commitment to the development of leadership in women; and

Whereas, Traci D. Corey agreed to chair the The University of Olivet Presidential Women’s Leadership Initiative, bringing her extensive experience, knowledge, passion, and abilities to this effort through a commitment of many volunteer hours in service to The University of Olivet; and

Whereas, through her leadership, the resulting Cultivating Women Leaders event engaged many of Michigan’s top women leaders, attracted significant individual and corporate support, and provided a powerful leadership development experience for numerous current and prospective The University of Olivet women students, resulting in a highly successful inaugural event; now

Therefore Be It Resolved, that on this nineteenth day of May, 2017, the Board of Trustees hereby extends its sincere gratitude and commendation to Traci D. Corey for her inspiration, perspiration, and dedication to The University of Olivet, its current and future students, and the women and citizens of our local and statewide community.

Thomas E. Kolassa ’69, Chair, Board of Trustees

“It was a hugely humbling surprise. I had no idea the Board of Trustees had decided to present me with this resolution,” Corey said. “I am deeply honored, but I truly couldn’t have accomplished all that we have without the village of people that have supported our efforts. This honor affirms to me that we are on the right path in further strengthening and sustaining the college’s rich history of supporting and inspiring young women. We are currently creating a multi-year strategic plan for the Presidential Women’s Leadership Initiative, and hope to announce some exciting news in the next few months.”

Corey, a native of Prather, California, has been a leader her entire life. She holds a bachelor’s degree in physical education, recreation and health from California State University at Fresno (FSU). She earned a master’s degree in education from Cumberland University.

She attended FSU on a full athletic scholarship, playing volleyball as a setter. She earned countless athletic and academic honors as a student-athlete and was drafted by the Portland Spikers of the American Professional Volleyball League. Later, she served as head coach at Belmont University and Yavapai College and as skills coach for numerous college sports camps.

Prior to serving The University of Olivet in the role of presidential spouse, Corey was the North Central Regional Manager for the Arizona Community Foundation, where she oversaw the fundraising programs. She was awarded the Northern Arizona New Fundraising Professional of the Year.

Corey also supports her daughter’s endeavors, including the creation of a national travel volleyball club. She also travels with President Corey to visit alumni and friends of the college and serves on a national presidential spouse’s task force with the Council of Independent Colleges.


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