Maher turkey trotFrom Niagara University… The Rev. James J. Maher, C.M., president of Niagara University, has been named to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I board of directors, effective Aug. 5, 2016. His term will continue through August 2020.

The NCAA board of directors serves as the overall governing body for Division I, with responsibility for strategy, policy, governance and membership, legislative oversight and management oversight.

“I look forward to working with Father Maher as a member of the Division I board of directors,” said NCAA President Mark Emmert. “The board’s focus on strategic issues and student-athlete engagement will benefit from not only his leadership, but also his background in student services and social activism.”

Father Maher, who currently serves as the MAAC representative on the NCAA’s presidential forum committee, was named the 26th president of Niagara University in March 2013.

A Vincentian priest, Father Maher previously spent 23 years at St. John’s University, the final two as executive vice president for mission and student services. He also spent several years working with the university’s athletics department and Division I men’s basketball team.

Niagara University maintains 18 Division I athletics programs, which compete as members of the NCAA in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference and Atlantic Hockey Association.

“I’m humbled by President Emmert’s appointment and eager to advance my involvement with the NCAA,” stated Father Maher, a sports enthusiast and avid runner who has completed 11 New York City marathons. “At Niagara University, and across the country, we know that the student experience is significantly enhanced through intercollegiate athletics and serves as a major source of pride for alumni.”