Athletics News

Maria Ochoa Woods
Maria Ochoa Woods

Senior Associate Athletics Director/SWA

Alma Mater:
Florida '90

Maria Ochoa Woods joined the University of Illinois Division of Intercollegiate Athletics staff as senior associate athletics director on Aug. 6, 2012. She also serves as the school's senior woman administrator (SWA). In her role as SWA, Woods represents the university at Big Ten and NCAA meetings, and internally is the liaison for gender equity and Title IX issues. Woods serves as the sport administrator for several Illinois teams, including women's basketball, women's golf, women's gymnastics, women's soccer, women's softball and women's swimming and diving. She also provides oversight to Academic Services for Student-Athletes.

Woods serves on the Illinois Gender Equity Council and the Committee on Race and Ethnicity.

Woods served Tulane as senior associate athletic director for administrative services and as senior woman administrator from December 2003 to 2012, including administration of several sports, Tulane's student service areas, and was responsible for student-athlete welfare.

A native of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla., Woods earned her bachelor's degree in exercise and sport sciences from Florida in 1990 and a master's degree in biology and general sciences from Converse College in 1992. She began her collegiate career as an assistant athletic trainer at Western Carolina in 1992 before being named head athletic trainer for the Catamounts from 1996-99. In addition to her athletic duties, Woods was a member of the faculty from 1999-2002 in the College of Health and Human Performance. Woods moved into administration as assistant athletic director/senior woman administrator at Western Carolina from 1999 to 2003 before she moved to Tulane in December of 2003.

Woods served on the NCAA Volleyball Committee from 2005-07, on the NCAA Peer Review Committee in 2005-06 and in 2010-11 and has served on the NCAA Amateurism Cabinet from 2008 to 2012.

Woods is married to Thomas Woods, a wide receivers coach at Eastern Illinois University. The couple has two children: Thomas, Jr. "TJ" and Alexander.

Updated July 2014

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