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Dr. Lyman (Lee) E. Ellis III

Dean of Admissions
Professor of Sport Studies 

Teaching Area

Sport Studies


  • EdD, University of Missouri, St. Louis
  • MBA, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
  • EdS, MS, University at New York, Albany
  • BA, State University College, Fredonia, New York


As women’s soccer coach, sports faculty, and athletics director, Lyman (Lee) Ellis has made many contributions to Principia over the past 22 years. Women’s soccer teams (1996–2010) under his tutelage were continually recognized for academic achievement, ethical and sportsperson-like conduct, and individual and team honors, while winning 70% of their games. From 1999–2007, Ellis chaired the sport management program. He served as faculty president in 2000. Serving as Athletic Director from 2008–2017, Ellis expanded and renovated facilities, improved services, added staff and programming, and implemented new management practices. Prior to Principia, Ellis started and directed the athletics program at SUNYIT, in Utica, New York, where he also coached men’s soccer, women’s basketball, and softball. Ellis also has 15 years of executive experience in sales and marketing. Currently, he teaches course in leadership and in the sociology, ethics, management, and business of sport. 

I was led to coaching and teaching by the desire to help others achieve extraordinary things, the opportunity to keep learning, and the excitement that comes from the 'aha' moments.

Scholarly Interests

  • Leadership
  • Character in sports (sportspersonship)
  • Soccer coaching and coach education
  • Sociology, ethics, management, and business of sport

Contributions to Field

  • Principia College Women's Soccer Coach (1996–2010)
    • Record: 208–84–10 (.705 win percentage)
    • United Soccer Coaches (NSCAA) Team Academic Award 14 consecutive years (1997–2010)
    • SLIAC Team Sportsmanship Award (2006–2010)
    • United Soccer Coaches (NSCAA) Team Ethics and Sportsmanship Award (2006–2010)
    • Coached eight SLIAC Conference Players of the Year and six Newcomers of the Year
    • NCAA Men's and Women's Soccer Rules Committee (2003–2006)
    • SLIAC Women’s Soccer Committee, Chair (2006–2010)
  • Principia College Director of Athletics (2008–2017)
    • NCAA Division III National Chair, Women's Soccer (2012)
    • SLIAC Administration Council and Executive Committee, Chair (2013–2014)
    • Constructed cross-country course for Principia to host 2016 NAIA and 2017 NCAA III National Championships


  • Inductee, SLIAC Hall of Fame, 2015
  • Recipient, UMSL Center for Character & Citizenship, Adolph and Carol Frank Character Education Scholarship, 2015
  • Eight-time SLIAC Coach of the Year (1997, 1999, 2004, 2006–2010)

Memberships and Affiliations

  • National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics
  • United Soccer Coaches

Publications and Presentations

  • Do Coachers who are Servant Leaders Promote Virtue in their Athletes? Journal of Character Education (Spring 2020) Volume 16, Issue1.  pp. 1-10.
  • “Servant Leadership: Exploring Ancient Virtues to Inform 21st Century School Leadership”  Symposium presentation: Association of Moral Educators Annual Conference 2017
  • “The Relationship between Intercollegiate Coaches’ Servant Leadership and their Athletes’ Ethically-Related Sport Orientations and Behaviors” Principia College, 2016
  • "Leadership Is Everyone's Calling . . . and It's Calling You!" Regional Growth Association, Alton, IL, 2016
  • "The Game Face of Sportsmanship," Character Plus National Conference, 2015
  • "Positive School Culture: It Begins (or Ends) with Adults," Character Plus National Conference, 2015
  • What To Do and How To Be: A Conversation about Leadership Effectiveness at Work, at Home, and Every Place in Between," Regional Growth Association, Alton, IL, 2013

Dr. Lee Ellis CV