Athletic director of Princeton University will lead Ladies Professional Golf Association

Mollie Marcoux Samaan. Princeton University Department of Athletics.

Princeton University Athletic Director Mollie Marcoux Samaan is leaving the school to become the next commissioner of the Ladies Professional Golf Association.

A national search will be conducted to choose her successor. The university has hired the consulting search firm Parker Executive Search to help with the search.

Marcoux Samaan has served as Princeton’s athletic director since 2014. A 1991 graduate of the university, was a two-sport varsity athlete in soccer and ice hockey who earned eight varsity letters and numerous honors in both sports. After she graduated from Princeton with a degree in history, she served as the assistant athletic director, assistant dean of admissions, and coach of girls’ ice hockey and soccer at the Lawrenceville School before beginning a 19-year career with Chelsea Piers Management, the company that owns Chelsea Piers New York and Chelsea Piers Connecticut.

During her tenure at Princeton University, sports teams have won 65 Ivy League championships, more than any other Ivy League school during the same period. Princeton also has been the highest ranked Ivy League school and consistently in the top 40 of all of Division I programs in the Directors’ Cup standings, which measure overall athletic success through NCAA championship participation.

At the LPGA, Marcoux Samaan will succeed Commissioner Mike Whan, who was recently named the next chief executive officer of the United States Golf Association. Marcoux Samaan will serve as the ninth commissioner of the LPGA, an organization that was founded in 1950.

Diane Gulyas, chair of the LPGA board of directors, said in a written statement that Marcoux Samaan was chosen from among a diverse group of candidates because the board feels she is the right leader to grow the organization and increase its impact.

“Mollie understands the power of golf to change the lives of girls and women. As a values-centered leader, she’s known for her skills in collaboration, managing through complexity and building a winning team culture. In every role, she’s had an outstanding record of performance in navigating change, forging lasting partnerships, and seeing – and seizing – new opportunities,” Gulyas said.

Marcoux Samaan said in a written statement that she is eager to lead LPGA initiatives for women and girls of every age and ability.

“The LPGA Commissioner role is one of the best jobs in sports today and the opportunity of a lifetime. I’m passionate about the game of golf and have been an LPGA fan since I was a little girl. I appreciate the LPGA’s history and the tenacity of its 13 founders. I’m truly inspired by our Tour players and teaching professionals,” Marcoux Samaan said. “I believe passionately that sports have the power to change the world. And in this moment in time – with the positive energy around women’s sports, women’s leadership and society’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion – I believe the LPGA has an incredible opportunity to use our platform for positive change…I’ve devoted my career to developing character, confidence and opportunities through sports. My mission and the LPGA’s mission are fully aligned: providing women and girls the opportunity to achieve their dreams through golf.”