RICHMOND, Va. (March 9, 2016) – Joe D’Antonio has been selected as the second commissioner in the 31-year history of the Colonial Athletic Association.
D’Antonio comes to the CAA from the BIG EAST Conference, where he serves as the Senior Associate Commissioner for Administration and NCAA Relations. He brings a wide range of experience and accomplishments, including more than a decade of work at the BIG EAST and eight years at Providence College, while also earning appointments to some of the NCAA’s most prestigious committees.
“I am honored and humbled to have been selected as the next Commissioner of the Colonial Athletic Association,” D’Antonio said. “I deeply appreciate that the Council of Presidents / Chancellors has provided me the opportunity to lead this accomplished group of institutions. I am anxiously looking forward to partnering with the CAA membership in achieving the Conference’s mission of stressing the role of college athletics within the educational framework of the institution. It goes without saying that the CAA is indebted to retiring Commissioner Tom Yeager for his 31 outstanding years of service, and I hope to build upon the foundation that he has set as the Conference prepares to write the next chapters of its history.”
In his role as Senior Associate Commissioner at the BIG EAST, he was charged with the oversight of the Conference’s internal operations and its interaction with the NCAA. His duties included overseeing the Conference’s compliance department and the Olympic sport championships department. He also served as liaison to the BIG EAST athletics directors and organized Conference-wide meetings.
“We are thrilled that Joe D’Antonio has agreed to serve as the next Commissioner of the Colonial Athletic Association,” said James Madison University President Jonathan R. Alger, who served as the chairman of the selection committee. “He has impressed everyone with his vision, strategic thinking, and nationally recognized expertise in intercollegiate athletics. Joe brings a wealth of experience from the conference level, the campus level, and from his work nationally with the NCAA. He has a clear passion for the values and educational mission of our institutions, and has worked extensively with a wide range of sports programs as represented in the CAA. With Joe at the helm, the CAA will continue to be a leader in striving for excellence while providing the best possible student-athlete experience.”
D’Antonio is currently a member of the NCAA Division I Legislative Committee, which is one of seven subgroups of the NCAA Division I Council. He was recently appointed to the NCAA Division I Council Two-Year Governance Structure Review Ad Hoc Working Group, which has been charged with considering refinements and enhancements to the new NCAA governance structure and legislative process.
In addition, D’Antonio was a member of the NCAA Division I Legislative Council from 2008-2015 and was the group’s chairperson for two years (2008-2010). He has been the chair of the CCACA (Conference Commissioners Association of Compliance Administrators) since 2007-08.
D’Antonio began his career at the BIG EAST in 2005 as the Associate Commissioner for Governance and Compliance and was promoted to Senior Associate Commissioner for Governance and Compliance in 2009. During that time, he was involved in all aspects of the conference office, including helping to manage and oversee the conference’s FBS football program as well as its nationally recognized men’s and women’s basketball teams.
From 1997-2005, D’Antonio worked as the Associate Athletic Director for Compliance and Administration at Providence College. He served as the athletic department liaison with the financial aid and admissions offices and was a sport administrator for women’s softball and men’s ice hockey. During that time, he also spent two years as the interim director of athletic facilities and game management.
A 1993 graduate of the New England School of Law in Boston where he earned Dean’s List honors, D’Antonio was admitted to the Commonwealth of Massachusetts State Bar in 1994 and worked in private practice prior until 1997. An Abington, Massachusetts native, D’Antonio received his undergraduate degree from Providence College in 1990.
He and his wife, Karen, have two children, Joseph III (16) and Olivia (13).
D’Antonio will take over as Commissioner of the CAA on July 1. He replaces Tom Yeager, who has served as the only commissioner in the 31-year history of the conference. Yeager will continue to serve in a consulting role over the next year.
“We want to express our tremendous gratitude to Tom Yeager, our founding commissioner, who has done a superb job in leading the CAA through a period of remarkable growth and change,” said President Alger. “As the longest-tenured commissioner of a Division I conference, Tom has made a profound and lasting impact on college sports and on the lives of many generations of student-athletes.”
Members of the Colonial Athletic Association include the College of Charleston, the University of Delaware, Drexel University, Elon University, Hofstra University, James Madison University, the University of North Carolina Wilmington, Northeastern University, Towson University and the College of William and Mary.
CAA Football members include the University at Albany, the University of Delaware, Elon University, James Madison University, the University of Maine, the University of New Hampshire, the University of Rhode Island, the University of Richmond, Stony Brook University, Towson University, Villanova University and the College of William and Mary.