Nikki Washington named assistant coach at University of Washington

(March 18, 2016) - UW women’s soccer head coach Lesle Gallimore completed her coaching staff by adding former Breaker Nikki Washington as assistant coach. Washington comes to the Huskies from Texas Christian University (TCU) where she served as director of operations for women's soccer last season.

(March 18, 2016) - UW women’s soccer head coach Lesle Gallimore completed her coaching staff by adding former Breaker Nikki Washington as assistant coach. Washington comes to the Huskies from Texas Christian University (TCU) where she served as director of operations for women's soccer last season.

"We are thrilled to welcome Nikki Washington to Montlake and to our Husky family,” UW head coach Lesle Gallimore said. “(Associate head coach) Amy (Griffin) and I performed a thorough search for this position and Nikki earned this opportunity through her ability to impress our entire search committee throughout the process. During her storied collegiate, international and professional  playing career she has made a name for herself as a person that others admire, trust, and enjoy being around. We are hiring a person early in her coaching career who exudes enthusiasm, models a high work ethic, and demonstrates a keen curiosity and willingness to learn every day.”

A Mesquite, Texas native, Washington was a three-time NCAA Champion during her playing career at North Carolina, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in Communications. She was named 2010 ACC Player of the Year and was a team captain and world champion with the U-20 U.S. Women’s National Team. Washington played professionally for five years, winning an NWSL Championship in 2013 with the Portland Thorns.

“I am thrilled to be a part of the UW women's soccer staff and am very thankful for this opportunity,” Washington said. “I could not be more excited to experience and support the culture that Lelse and Amy have cultivated. As soon as I stepped on campus I knew that UW was special and I am now a proud Husky.” 

Washington also served as a graduate assistant coach during her time at TCU, where she began and will continue to work on her master’s degree in Liberal Arts. She has three siblings – Brandon, Lecolian Jr. and Sandra – and is the daughter of Lecolion and Freida Washington. She enjoys playing the drums, playing Spikeball and board games.

“I am excited about the dimension Nikki will add to both our staff and team,” associate head coach Amy Griffin said. “She shares similar enthusiasm about the history of UW women’s soccer as well as the belief we can win a national championship. We will benefit from her drive, charisma and experience on the soccer field in both coaching and playing environments.”

Washington will join the Huskies ahead of UW’s spring season, which begins on Saturday, April 9 against Seattle Reign FC.

Additional quotes on Nikki Washington:

UW women’s soccer head coach Lesle Gallimore: 
“Nikki Washington will be a tremendous mentor and role model for our recruits and student-athletes, and we are certain there are many things from her soccer experiences that our staff will tap as resources  in our quest to win more Pac-12 titles and vie for a National Championship. We’re looking forward to getting Nikki on campus after spring break and she’ll hit the ground running as our recruiting coordinator and have ample time to spend with our team as we train and compete during spring quarter. As she joked: It must be a good fit, the gear already has her name on it."

TCU women’s soccer head coach Eric Bell:
“Nikki did a fantastic job for us in her role. I’m very proud and happy for her with this opportunity. She will do a great job at the University of Washington. She brings a level of professionalism and different ideas with her. Her playing experience, both here domestically and abroad, are going to help them in the development of players as well as recruiting. She’s going to very good job in helping them become a better soccer program.”

Former USWNT head coach Tony DiCicco:
"Nikki has unique and special qualities. First she is a world class athlete with a wonderful and healthy competitive drive. She has excellent leadership qualities and is a natural leader of women. Nikki also has an exceptional smile and a ‘fun side’ that quickly endears her to players and staff.”

North Carolina women’s soccer head coach Anson Dorrance:
"The main thing my forty year coaching career has taught me is this: I want my life to be surrounded with people who have character and live principle-centered lives. Please know with Nikki Washington you are not only getting an individual with world class talent but also one of deep character as well. She receives my highest recommendation."

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