SEC’s Johnson Joins Baylor as Associate VP

October 17, 2022
Dr. Torie A. Johnson

Longtime Southeastern Conference academic administrator Dr. Torie A. Johnson will join Baylor University as its new associate vice president for strategic communications and initiatives, effective Nov. 28, 2022.

Media Contact: Lori Fogleman, Baylor University Media and Public Relations, 254-709-5959
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WACO, Texas (Oct. 17, 2022) – Longtime Southeastern Conference academic administrator Dr. Torie A. Johnson will join Baylor University as its new associate vice president for strategic communications and initiatives, effective Nov. 28.

Johnson currently serves as the SEC’s associate commissioner for academic relations and was instrumental in establishing the SECU Academic Initiative, a predecessor to its academic relations program, more than a decade ago as its first executive director. The focus of SEC academic relations is to highlight the teaching, research and service accomplishments of the conference’s students, faculty and staff, while also encompassing a host of faculty collaboration, administrator development and student recruitment initiatives.

“We are extremely excited for Dr. Johnson to return to Baylor and help us shine a brighter light on the incredible momentum behind the University,” said Jason D. Cook, Baylor’s vice president for marketing and communications and chief marketing officer. “She is incredibly respected not only within intercollegiate athletics, but among presidents, chancellors and provosts within the SEC and across the country, and we look forward to working with Dr. Johnson in expanding Baylor’s brand and influence even further.”

A Baylor journalism graduate and native of nearby Gatesville, Texas, Johnson will lead proactive strategies that elevate Baylor’s status as a preeminent Christian research university. She also will coordinate efforts with many of Baylor’s partner universities and organizations, while overseeing several University-wide brand, media and public relations initiatives.

“I look forward to serving my alma mater as a member of the Division of Marketing and Communications,” Johnson said. “This is a homecoming for me, and I am excited to join the University that prepared me for my career. I know what Baylor has been from my time as an undergraduate student, and I am thrilled to contribute to what Baylor will become under President Linda Livingstone’s steady and visionary leadership.”

Johnson has held several roles of increasing responsibility since joining the SEC as a compliance assistant in 2003. She served as director of the National Letter of Intent Program (2004-07) and assistant director of championships (2007-11) before helping establish the SECU Academic Initiative in 2011.

“I have been fortunate to work for more than two decades with SEC Commissioner Greg Sankey, and I want to thank him and the presidents and chancellors of the SEC for trusting me with the conference’s academic reputation,” Johnson said.

Johnson started her career as director of media relations for the Southland Conference under then-Commissioner Sankey. While a student at Baylor, she became the first female Black editor-in-chief of The Lariat, the University’s student newspaper.

Johnson currently serves on the NCAA’s Research Committee and leads the SEC Council on Racial Equity and Social Justice. In addition to either having led or having held positions on several other SEC committees, she also has served in event management capacities for the SEC and NCAA.

While working for the SEC, Johnson earned a doctorate in higher education management from the University in Georgia in 2017, building upon a master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

Johnson is an active member of The Church at Brook Hills, a Baptist-affiliated congregation in Birmingham.


Baylor University is a private Christian University and a nationally ranked Research 1 institution. The University provides a vibrant campus community for more than 20,000 students by blending interdisciplinary research with an international reputation for educational excellence and a faculty commitment to teaching and scholarship. Chartered in 1845 by the Republic of Texas through the efforts of Baptist pioneers, Baylor is the oldest continually operating University in Texas. Located in Waco, Baylor welcomes students from all 50 states and more than 90 countries to study a broad range of degrees among its 12 nationally recognized academic divisions.