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Stephanie Hauser talks making history, challenges ahead for WIAA

Published: Apr. 20, 2021 at 6:00 PM CDT
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STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WSAW) -Less than 24 hours after her final interview on Thursday, Stephanie Hauser received word that she had been selected as the next executive director of the WIAA.

“I was caught off guard, I did not expect that that was happening on Friday,” says Hauser. “I was a little bit at a loss for words.”

With it, Hauser will be the first woman to ever serve as Executive Director for the WIAA.

“The honest truth is that until I read it on Todd’s (Clark, Director of Communications for the WIAA) press release on Friday, it never really hit me,” Hauser says.

She knows that’s a big deal.

“It’s powerful.”

Now her focus is on preparing for July 31st, when she officially takes over.

“My vision is really providing the opportunity for every student in the state of Wisconsin to have access to education-based athletics,” Hauser explains.

The former SPASH athletic director has served as an assistant director under the retiring Dave Anderson for nearly six years. While she admits she has plenty to learn, that experience will knock off some of the learning curve.

“Absolutely, the past six years, almost six years in this office has given me a lot of knowledge that will make that transition more smooth,” says Hauser.

Hauser won’t be taking over under ordinary circumstances. The pandemic and the corresponding financial hit the WIAA has taken would be a daunting task for many, but not in her mind.

“I’m a positive leader who sees challenges as opportunities,” Hauser explains. “And yes, I embrace the fact that we have a lot of challenges that we’re facing right now, but each one of those challenges brings an opportunity.”

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