Auburn's Shelly Poe Receives CoSIDA Trailblazer Award
June 26, 2012
Auburn Assistant Athletic Director for Media Relations Shelly Poe recently received the College Sports Information Directors of America's 2012 Trailblazer Award, at the CoSIDA Convention in St. Louis. The Trailblazer Award is presented annually to an individual who is a pioneer in the field of sports information and who has mentored and helped improve the level of ethnic and gender diversity within CoSIDA. Poe is the 12th recipient of the Trailblazer Award.
Poe, who began at Auburn on March 21, has worked for over 30 years in sports information profession, previously holding positions at West Virginia University and Ohio State University, in addition to a long tenure of service to CoSIDA.
Poe began covering sports while still in high school. A native of Morgantown, W.V., and a National Merit Scholar, Poe started writing about sports while attending University High School. She covered girls' basketball games on a part-time basis for The Dominion Post.
Poe then worked four years as a student assistant at West Virginia University and graduated with honors from WVU's Perley Issac Reed School of Journalism. Poe joined the WVU athletic staff as assistant sports information director in 1985 and in April, 1988, she was named the Mountaineers' sports information director at age 24, the youngest person and only female at that time to head the SID office of a I-A football school.
During her time with West Virginia football, she worked with worked with 14 bowl teams, nine consensus All-Americans, finalists for the Heisman Trophy, Rimington, Outland, Doak Walker, Lombardi, Butkus and Nagurski awards, 47 NFL draft picks and 34 NFF scholar-athletes.
Poe was inducted into the CoSIDA Hall of Fame in 2002, becoming the first-ever WVU publicist and just the fifth female to receive that honor in the organization's history. She also served as President of the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association, becoming the first female to hold that post.
Poe served as official scorer for the women's Final Four in Charlotte in 1995 and chief press officer for shooting sports at the 1987 Pan American Games in Indianapolis.
For almost five years, Poe was responsible for handling the communications and public relations for Ohio State University football. She served as chief liaison with the media and coordinated media operations for home football games at Ohio Stadium. At Ohio State, she had the great fortune to work with winners of the Ronnie Lott, Jim Thorpe, Butkus and Nagurski awards, a NFF scholar-athlete and Arthur Ashe award winner, and teams that played in the Rose, Fiesta and Sugar bowls and the BCS championship game. She also served as host media coordinator for the 2012 NCAA Rifle Championships and the 2012 Men's Basketball Second and Third Rounds.
An at-large member of CoSIDA's Board of Directors from 1999-2003, Poe currently serves the organization as Second Vice President, and is just the fourth female to serve in the officer's rotation.