Athletic directors from all corners of Michigan are gathering this weekend for the annual conference of the Michigan Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association. This MIAAA might be the most powerful organization of its kind in the USA.
The MIAAA is powerful in its professionalism, in its commitment to ongoing professional training for its members.
Michigan has ranked consistently among the top states in the number of NIAAA Leadership Training Courses completed by interscholastic athletic administrators. The MIAAA attracts a higher percentage of its members to its annual conference than most states. And the MIAAA also conducts a smaller workshop for its members in late June and a leadership academy especially for newcomers to the profession early each August.
The MIAAA is powerful in its partnerships, most of all in its connections to the Michigan High School Athletic Association. Most of the MIAAA’s board meetings are in the MHSAA’s facility. The majority of the MHSAA’s Representative Council are MIAAA members. Many MHSAA staff participate in MIAAA programs, and many MIAAA members serve on MHSAA committees. There is a powerful synonymy as we pull in the same direction to serve school sports in Michigan.
This winter, as we watched a member school go off the rails over a transfer student’s eligibility, we were given a reminder of the power of professionalism and partnerships in the conduct of both personal and corporate affairs. While poison spewed from that school and two celebrity attorneys, the MHSAA kept a low profile and stayed on the high road. We worried less about defending ourselves and more about encouraging others to defend the policies and procedures they had adopted for school sports in Michigan. As usual, the MIAAA and many of its individual members led the effort.