Rev. James J. Maher, C.M.

The Rev. James J. Maher, C.M., president of Niagara University, has been named to the Board of Governors of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The NCAA is a member-led organization dedicated to the well-being and lifelong success of college athletes. Its Board of Governors is the highest governance body in the organization, focusing on association-wide strategy. Fr. Maher is now one of 16 voting board members.

“I look forward to continue working with Father Maher as he joins the Board of Governors,” said NCAA President Mark Emmert. “He’s a dedicated leader in higher education and I appreciate his commitment to academics and focus on making a difference in the lives of students. I have no doubt that he will positively inform decision-making for the Association in this new role.”

By prioritizing academics, well-being, and fairness, the NCAA works to create opportunities for student-athletes. In 1906, the NCAA was founded to keep college athletes safe and since has been working hard to protect them physically and mentally, on and off the field. The association emphasizes academics, so student-athletes get the most out of their education and build skills for success in the workplace and in life. Additionally, the organization is committed to providing a fair, inclusive and fulfilling environment for both student-athletes and fans.

The appointment to the Board of Governors continues Fr. Maher’s work with the NCAA. He has been an active member of the NCAA Division I Board of Directors since 2016. On the Board of Governors, Fr. Maher will serve as a resource and provide oversight across all three divisions of the association.

Niagara University sponsors 18 Division I athletics programs, which compete as members of the NCAA in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference.

This most recent appointment adds to the impressive list of leadership roles that Father Maher holds as a servant leader. He is a trustee of DePaul University and is on the board of directors for the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities (ACCU). Additionally, he sits on the boards of the Darwin Martin House Complex and the Buffalo Niagara Partnership, a privately-funded, economic development organization and the largest regional chamber of commerce in Western New York. He previously served on the University and Collegiate Executive Committee of the Fair Labor Association and was a leading member of the Global Alliance for Workers and Community.