First-Ever CIAA Virtual Tournament Week Experience to Celebrate its Continued Legacy

19 Jan, 2021

The Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA), the nation’s oldest historically black athletic conference, in partnership with Visit Baltimore, announces its first-ever virtual tournament week experience. In a continuation from the kickoff event this past June, the upcoming week-long celebration will be tabbed the CIAA Virtual Vibe: Tournament Edition and take place February 23-27 during the week in which the CIAA Basketball Tournament traditionally occurs.

Registration is now open for the virtual platform and can be accessed by clicking here.

The CIAA Virtual Vibe: Tournament Edition will feature a Baltimore-themed interactive virtual platform that will help welcome fans to the ‘Charm City’ while showcasing a host of events, including several that serve as cornerstones of tournament week. This includes the always popular CIAA Fan Fest presented by Nationwide and the CIAA Step Show presented by McDonald’s along with community engagement mainstays High School Education Day presented by U.S. Army and Career Expo presented by Toyota.

The virtual experience will also offer a collection of new events, including an Old School/New School DJ Battle and the CIAA Esports Tournament presented by Bayer. These events, along with performances by national recording artists and celebrity hosts, will celebrate the legacy and tradition of the CIAA and its member institutions while highlighting the nostalgia and cultural significance of the CIAA Tournament.  

Accompanying this one-of-a-kind experience is a new theme, The Legacy Lives On, which will be highlighted in social media and marketing campaigns as well as custom memorabilia as the conference transitions (virtually) to the new host city of Baltimore, Maryland.

Fans and alumni can celebrate this historic occasion in style by purchasing the recently launched CIAA Legacy Fan Box, a collection of exclusive items shipped directly to their homes. On sale now through January 20, the limited-edition CIAA Legacy Fan Box will arrive in a custom designed package just in time to enhance your CIAA Virtual Vibe experience in February. To learn more or purchase, visit the CIAA Legacy Fan Box information center here.

Access to the CIAA Virtual Vibe is free, but registration is required. Those interested in taking part in this unique virtual experience are encouraged to register early as space is limited. Accompanying the registration information is the tentative schedule of events, which can be found at

CIAA Education Day

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About the CIAA

Founded in 1912, the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA) is the first and longest running, African American athletic conference in the U.S. and one of the most recognized conferences in Division II.  The CIAA conducts 14 championships attended by more than 150,000 fans from around the country.  In 2020, the conference celebrated the special 75th anniversary of its Championship Basketball Tournament – an event that has become a must-see in the African American community  The Basketball Tournament has been honored as a Champion of Economic impact in Sports Tourism by Sports Destination Management, the leading publication with the largest circulation of sports event planners and tournament directors in the sports tourism market, for both 2018 and 2019, Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, the CIAA is governed by the Presidents and Chancellors of its 12 member institutions:  Bowie State University, Claflin University, Elizabeth City State University, Fayetteville State University, Johnson C. Smith University, Lincoln University of Pennsylvania, Livingstone College, Saint Augustine’s University, Chowan University is an associate member in football and women’s bowling.  For more information on the CIAA, visit the, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.

About Visit Baltimore

Visit Baltimore is the official sales and marketing arm for the City of Baltimore. The 501(c)(6) organization generates economic benefits for stakeholders through the attraction of convention, group and leisure visitors. In 2019, spending by travelers totaled $6 billion in direct spending throughout the city, supporting 86,827 total jobs and generating $750 million in state and city tax revenues. For more information, please visit

CIAA Commissioner Jacqueline (Jacqie) McWilliams - BIOGRAPHY

As the third full-time Commissioner of the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association (CIAA), Jacqie McWilliams is the first African-American female ever to hold the position. She leads all strategic planning for the conference, working closely with the 13 member institutions and the board of directors and staff to support the advancement of student athletes, and managing 14 CIAA championships. 

Ms. McWilliams spent nine years at the NCAA, managing NCAA championships, to include serving as Director of the Division I Women’s Basketball Tournament in 2006-2009 and the Division I Men’s Basketball tournament (2007-2012). Ms. McWilliams also has experience in administration, facilities and operations, compliance and governance, human resources, and external operations. She was a former student-athlete at Hampton University where she was a member of the 1988 NCAA Division II Women’s Basketball Championship team and the 1987 and 1990 CIAA volleyball championship teams. 

Ms. McWilliams earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology from Hampton University in 1991, a Master of Arts in Sports Management and Administration from Temple University in 1993.  In 2006, Ms. McWilliams was inducted into Temple University’s Gallery of Success and was a member of the inaugural class inducted into the Sierra High School Hall of Fame, in Colorado. She currently serves on the board of directors for Women Leaders in College Sports, the Collegiate Women’s Sports Awards (CWSA), and the NCAA Board Ad Hoc Committee for Cultural Diversity.  She was appointed to the John B. McLendon Scholarship Foundation Board. She recently completed her term as chair of NCAA DII Management Council and her appointment to the NCAA Board of Governors.  

Ms. McWilliams is a motivational speaker, an active member of the Charlotte Crown Jewels Links Chapter, and Central Church of God.  A native of Colorado Springs, Ms. McWilliams is the proud mother of Samone, age 12.


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