‘Women In Sports Conference’ shows student-athletes they can continue with sports after playing days are done

Carmel Brand was extremely pleased with the turnout.

The capacity of the venue for Tuesday’s ‘Women In Sports Conference’, the National Orange Show Event Center in San Bernardino, is 1,300 people.

‘And we had 1,417 … so the turnout was pretty good,” Brand said with a laugh.

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Tuesday’s ninth-annual conference hosted students from high schools in Riverside and San Bernardino counties.

The idea is to ‘target high achieving female student athletes’ in 10th and 11th grades and show them that, once their playing days are over, there are many careers in sports for females, said Brand, the longtime athletic director at Pacific High School as well as the event coordinator for the Citrus Belt Area Athletic Directors in the CIF-SS.

Among the panelists were Lindsay Amstutz, the Senior Vice President and General Manager of FOX Sports West/Prime Ticket/FOX Sports San Diego.

Others included Terry Schweikert (Assistant Softball Coach @ UC Riverside) Marilyn Oliver (Certified Athletic Trainer and Professor at University of La Verne MSS Department), Laura Tolbirt (Senior Director of Corporate Sales, Ontario Reign) and Jasmyn Wilson (Director of Ticket Operations, Ontario Reign).

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“When I get speakers, I try and get a variety,” Brand said Thursday. “We want to show (the audience) that you can still stay in sports, but not necessarily be the athlete. (There are) plenty of other jobs to keep them connected to sports.

Brand still has a few ‘big fish’ on her wish list for the next conference.

And, for Brand, she was recently named the California Athletic Director of the Year by a vote of her peers and will be honored at a dinner in April.