Ole Miss Vice Chancellor for Intercollegiate Athletics Keith Carter announced Tuesday a restructuring of his senior leadership team, including the appointments of Jennifer Saxon and Shannon Singletary as Executive Associate Athletics Directors.
Saxon, who guides the social responsibility and engagement division, will also serve as the senior women’s administrator and assume oversight of human resources and Title IX coordination. Singletary will supervise the business office and academic services in addition to continuing to direct the health and sports performance department.
“To this point, nearly all of my tenure as athletics director has been spent navigating the pandemic, so the process of returning to normal has given me the opportunity to address our department’s leadership structure. One thing is clear, we are blessed with a gifted team of administrators, and I’ve determined that we can utilize their talents in new ways to better serve our student-athletes and coaches,” Carter said. “Jennifer and Shannon offer expertise in a number of areas, and most of all, they understand the importance of student-athlete welfare and development. I’m grateful for their counsel, leadership and dedication to Ole Miss and know they will excel in their new positions.
“With these and our other appointments, I’m excited about the new reporting lines in our administration, with Tom Kleinlein as our sole Deputy A.D. with direct oversight of our external affairs, and Jennifer and Shannon leading our internal operations. Including the rest of the talented staff in our senior leadership, Ole Miss Athletics has outstanding decision-makers guiding our actions.”
The Ole Miss athletics compliance office is now under the direction of Will Kava, who is in his fifth year working with the Rebels. Kava is being promoted to Senior Associate A.D., and moving forward, he will report to Paul McCarthy, Ole Miss’ Senior Associate General Counsel/Athletics Compliance Officer.
“Will’s experience, education and demeanor made him the clear choice to lead our compliance operation,” Carter said. “He has the historical context surrounding our past challenges while bringing his own perspective to rules education and adherence. Will is the perfect person to help ensure our coaches and staff are representing our university with integrity.”
Other Rebel administrators with expanding roles include communications director Kyle Campbell, who will also spearhead licensing within the department and assume the title of Associate A.D. for Brand Strategy, and Neal Mead, who is being promoted to Associate A.D. for Event Management and will help facilitate new gameday experiences.
In addition, the athletics leadership team recently grew with the elevation of Tiffany Edwards, Assistant A.D. for Human Resources, to senior staff and the hire of Daniel Zewde as Assistant A.D. for Digital Strategy and Analytics.
“Kyle, Neal and Tiffany provide tremendous insight and experience. They share my vision for our department, and I look forward to seeing them thrive in these new roles,” Carter said. “From a digital standpoint, our team is data driven, and we welcome Daniel’s background and perspective to strengthen this important area.”
This will mark Saxon’s second stint as an SWA, having served in that capacity during a five-year term at South Carolina State as Assistant A.D. for Academic Enhancement. She joined Ole Miss Athletics in 2014 and shifted from the student-athlete enhancement department to the newly-formed social responsibility and engagement office in January.
In her time in Oxford, Saxon has been the driving force behind student-athlete programming on countless topics including community engagement, life skills, majors symposiums, resume workshops, interviewing practice, job training, postgraduate placement, professional branding and more. She is also the advisor for the Ole Miss Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC).
Singletary enters his 18th year as a senior athletics administrator for his alma mater. In 2012, he helped launch the Rebels’ groundbreaking health and sports performance model, which takes a holistic approach to providing student-athletes with optimal health care. Under Singletary’s oversight, the program’s services include strength and conditioning, athletic training, team physicians, physical therapy, massage therapy, sports psychologist and sports nutrition.
An accomplished speaker and author, Singletary’s medical expertise has landed him on countless committees at the campus, civic and state levels, but his most important appointment may have occurred in 2020 when he represented Athletics on the university’s COVID-19 task force. He continues to provide daily leadership in that area for the department and community.
Kava started his tenure at Ole Miss as an Assistant Director of Compliance and has risen to department head in just five short years. Prior to this promotion, he was already the lead rules interpreter and guided the rules education program for both internal and external efforts.
A former football letterwinner with the Washington Huskies, Kava’s career began in the Cal State San Marcos and San Diego State compliance offices before returning to his alma mater for a three-year term that preceded his arrival in Oxford. Kava also boasts a juris doctorate from the Thomas Jefferson School of Law.
Campbell has spent 10 years as the Rebels’ chief communications officer, while overseeing digital content and directing media relations for the football program. In 2014, he and his staff were recognized by the Football Writers Association of America on its “Super 11” list, which honors the nation’s 11 best communications departments.
Among his other duties, Campbell helped create and execute the Rebel Road Trip in 2012 and continues to coordinate the annual coaches caravan. He is also the SEC Network administrative point of contact and schedules on-air talent for the local production team.
Mead has served as Ole Miss’ director of event management since 2015. He has also overseen premium services and its 100-plus suites and more than 25,000 square feet of clubs and suites. With his title elevation, Mead will spearhead a new initiative to advance gameday experiences.
Mead previously worked in event management at Southern Miss, where he was also a standout football player during his collegiate days. As the starting right tackle, he helped the Golden Eagles to a pair of bowl appearances and the 2003 Conference USA Championship.
Edwards joined the university in 2000 and shifted to the athletics staff in 2016. As the HR officer, her duties include recruitment and hiring, employee relations, policy management, compensation, professional development and diversity initiatives.
Before moving to Athletics, Edwards spent 10 years across campus in the facility management office, where she was the liaison with university human resources and managed payroll, recruiting, hiring and retention for the department.
The latest addition to the Ole Miss administration, Zewde comes to Oxford from the NCAA offices, where he was the Coordinator of Championships, Alliances, Ticketing & Marketing and helped increase ticketing revenue from $880,000 to $1.3 million. Prior to his four years in that role, he served as Content Coordinator for USA Track and Field, where he directed email and web communication through the 2016 Olympic Games and 2017 Outdoor World Championships.
A graduate and former track athlete at West Texas A&M, Zewde’s diverse background also includes a stint as Marketing Supervisor at Texas Tech, where he steered all digital communication with prospective students and executed the first Snapchat admissions recruitment campaign in the country.
Courtesy of Ole Miss Athletics