Joe Walsh became the GNAC’s first full-time commissioner in 2005. Prior to that, he was assistant men’s basketball coach at Emmanuel College, head women’s basketball coach and athletic director at Emerson College, and assistant women’s basketball coach at Harvard University after starting his coaching career at Saint Columbkilles High School in Brighton, Massachusetts.
Walsh has spent over 30 years involved in athletics at the community level within the City of Boston as a coach and an administrator. He currently serves as the President of The National Association of Division III Athletic Administrators (NADIIAA) and is a member of the D3 Management Council. In the past, he has served as the NCAA DIII Women’s Basketball National Committee and New England Chair, the NCAA DIII Membership Committee and on the NCAA DIII Men’s Basketball Regional Advisory Committee.
In his tenure at the GNAC, Walsh has secured more than $800,000 in NCAA grant funding and corporate sponsorships for the conference.
Joe was inducted into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame as a member of the class of 2013. He is past president of both the Allston and Brighton Boards of Trade, Allston Brighton Kiwanis and the co-chair of the Brian J. Honan Charitable Foundation. He has served on the ECAC Award of Valor Committee, the ECAC Women’s Basketball Selection Committee and the board of directors at the West End House Boy’s & Girl’s Club. He was the Director of Community Relations at Boston University for 15 years.
In addition to serving as the NADIIIAA President, Walsh also served as a member of the DIII Convention Planning Committee and as a teacher in the NAMI Family to Family education program. For more information, visit the National Alliance on Mental Illness home page at nami.org.
Michael Ghika began his tenure with the GNAC in July 2014, as he was named the conference's first-ever full-time Assistant Commissioner for Media Relations. Ghika (pronounced JEE-ka) previously worked at the NCAA Division-II Northeast-10 Conference for three years, serving in a full-time capacity as the league’s Director of Strategic Communications from 2012-14.
Ghika is responsible for the maintaining and updating of the GNAC website and serves as a liaison with the conference's AD Council, sports information directors and coaches' groups. He also oversees all communication with assigners for the league's 20 championship sports. He served on the DIII Northeast Men's Tennis Regional Advisory Committee (RAC) from 2015-17 and currently serves on the DIII Northeast Field Hockey RAC. Within the conference, he has served as the GNAC sport chair for women's soccer, men's lacrosse and women's lacrosse. He has attended the CoSIDA Convention in 2014, the ECAC-SIDA workshops in 2015, 2016 and 2018, the D3 Commissioner's Association Meetings in 2015 and 2017, as well as the NCAA Convention from 2015-18.
He currently is serving as a member of the NCAA Division III Strategic Communication Working Group in a strategic effort to update the DIII Strategic Communications Guide.
During the 2014-15 academic year, he helped oversee both Rebecca Mullen and Doug Chin, who split time working for the conference office on the DIII Ethnic Minortiy and Women's Grant. Mullen went on to become the assistant commissioner at the New England Collegiate Conference (NECC), while Chin was named the assistant commissioner at the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC). He oversaw Rachel Wyman on the same grant during the 2016-17 academic year before she went on to attend grad school at Georgetown University and work in the school's athletic development and fundraising office.
He graduated from Southern New Hampshire University in 2011 with a B.S. in Sport Management and a minor in Communications. In his time as a student, he worked for four years as an Athletics Communications assistant in the school’s athletic department. He also served as Director of Media Operations for the North Shore Navigators, a summer collegiate baseball team located in Lynn, Mass., where he oversaw operations for separate television and radio broadcast crews, managed the game day press box operations and assisted the team's general manager from 2009 until he joined the NE10 in 2011.
Annie Jenkins began her role as Assistant to the Commissioner at the GNAC on August 1, 2017. Her hiring was supported through the NCAA Division III Ethnic Minority and Women’s Grant, a program that provides funding for entry-level administrative positions at NCAA Division III schools and conference offices. She remains a member of the staff in a full-time capacity for the 2018-19 academic year.
Jenkins received her Master of Education degree in Athletic Administration (Collegiate Level) in May 2017 from Endicott College, where the 2017 Endicott “Woman of Impact” honoree spent the past two years as the Gulls’ Sports Information Graduate Assistant.
Jenkins, a CoSIDA 2016 Fred Stabley Sr. District 1 Writing Contest “Story with Video” winner, served as the primary media relations contact for six of Endicott’s 21 varsity teams by assisting with statistical coverage, social media, and multimedia content creation to expand the College’s global reach.
Prior to her time at Endicott, Jenkins graduated magna cum laude with a B.S. in Journalism and a minor in Political Science from Emerson College in May 2015, where she was a softball student-athlete from 2011-15. The Woodland, Calif. native was a four-time National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-America Scholar-Athlete, earning three Academic All-Conference nods and six Dean’s List selections. She was also the Lions' senior captain for a team that earned the nation’s top softball team grade-point average all four years she was on the squad.
As the president of Emerson’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) board for two years, the 2012 GNAC Sportsmanship Award recipient also held a work-study job in the athletic department all four years to generate accurate statistics as part of her sports information staff gameday coverage.
She has attended the 2018 NCAA Convention and the 2018 NCAA Emerging Leaders Seminar, and successfully coordinated the 2018 GNAC SAAC Spring Forum and the 2018 GNAC Professional Development Seminar.
Chris Brown, who worked at the NCAA national headquarters in Indianapolis for nearly four years, was named as the GNAC Compliance Consultant on August 3, 2018.
From September 2014 to July 2018, Brown served as a staff member for the NCAA Academic and Membership Affairs department. While at the national office, he served on both the Division II and III teams. His responsibilities included processing legislative relief waivers and interpretative requests, issuing legislative publications, and providing compliance oriented educational initiative for the membership.
"Chris has many years of experience with the NCAA and will be a great asset to the GNAC and our member institutions," said Walsh.
Brown graduated from Colorado State University where he received his bachelor's degree in History before receiving his master's degree from Austin Peay State University. Prior to joining the NCAA staff, he worked in compliance at both the Ohio Valley Conference and Southeast Missouri State University. Brown is currently serving as a graduate teaching assistant at the University of Kansas, where he is pursuing his PhD in Sport Management.
GNAC athletic departments will communicate directly with Brown regarding NCAA compliance questions. He will also be conducting conference calls with compliance staff from member schools and distributing a GNAC compliance newsletter twice during the 2018-19 academic year. Worcester State University was the site of a Regional Rules seminar in June 2017, where Brown presented to New England-area athletics communications directors, including many GNAC administrators, regarding certain policies and procedures involving the promotion of prospective student-athletes.