Commissioner, West Coast Conference
Gloria Nevarez was selected as the Commissioner of the West Coast Conference in April of 2018. Nevarez, who recently signed a contract extension, is the first Latina appointed as a Division I Commissioner and is one of ten female conference commissioners serving in Division I Athletics. She serves on the NCAA’s Men’s Basketball Oversight Committee, overseeing Division I men’s basketball policy, and the NCAA Transfer Working Group.
As Commissioner, Nevarez has directed an overhaul of the conference’s branding, expanding the league’s national television contracts and sponsorships. Nevarez modernized the WCC governance structure, emphasizing social justice initiatives, empowering student-athlete voices, and launching into the esports space.
Under Nevarez’ leadership, the WCC became the first Division I conference to adopt the groundbreaking “Russell Rule”. The diversity hiring initiative requires all WCC schools to include a traditionally underrepresented candidate in the final pool for every athletic personnel search.
Nevarez has guided the conference through the COVID-19 pandemic, managing the execution of safe playing seasons and tournaments and working with local and state health agencies and university presidents.
Nevarez is a native of Santa Clara, California, and graduated cum laude as a basketball student-athlete from the University of Massachusetts. Nevarez received her Juris Doctorate from the University of California and is a graduate of the NCAA Fellows Program and the NACWAA Executive Institute, and was an adjunct faculty member at the University of San Francisco’s Sport Management Master’s program.
Nevarez began her career at San Jose State University, as Director of Compliance, and later served multiple roles at the University of California. She spent a previous stint at the West Coast Conference, directing the Conference’s compliance efforts from 2002 through 2007.
Nevarez served as Associate Athletic Director at the University of Oklahoma and as the Senior Associate Commissioner, Senior Women Administrator at the Pac-12 Conference.