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Research Associate & Lecturer, Center for Leadership in Athletics, University of Washington

Julie McCleery’s primary role is as the principal investigator for the Ambitious Coaching Research Project and the State of Play: Seattle-King County. The Ambitious Coaching research is an exploration into the core practices of highly effective coaches – what we call Ambitious Coaches. She also teaches Coaching Philosophy and Pedagogy in the IAL’s coaching degree program. The State of Play is a landscape analysis of barriers and opportunities for youth sport and physical activity in the county. She has over 25 years of experience as an educator, coach, and youth sports advocate. Prior to joining UW, she ran a consulting business assisting educational and non-profit clients with strategic planning, grant writing, and project management. She was on the US National Rowing Team as both an athlete and a coach. She currently coaches youth baseball and is a vocal advocate for improving youth access to sport, recreation, and great coaching. She received a B.A. from Georgetown University, an M.Ed. from Harvard, and a Ph.D. from the University of Washington. She enjoys hiking with her two dogs and cheering respectfully from the sidelines when she watches her three boys play soccer, lacrosse, basketball and baseball.


  • –present
    Research Associate of Coaching, Center for Leadership in Athletics, University of Washington