Joe Fisher, who is in his 37th year directing the Catholic University women's cross country and track and field teams, has guided the Cardinals to tremendous success throughout his tenure. Fisher earned Capital Athletic Conference Cross Country Coach of the Year honors four different times with the most recent coming in 2006, and last year, he received Coaching Staff of the Year accolades from the Landmark Conference at the indoor track championships.
The 2011 cross country campaign saw CUA place second at the season-opening Albright Invitational, and then earn a third place finish at the conference championships. Camelia Mayfield and Laura Kinley posted top-ten finishes to earn All-Conference honors, with Mayfield later going on to earn All-Region accolades.
Fisher did some of his finest work during the 2012 indoor track season, guiding the Cardinals to an impressive third place finish at the conference championships. For their efforts, Fisher and his staff received the Coaching Staff of the Year award.
At the outdoor championships, Kelly Carioto and Mayfield were named the Landmark Conference Field and Track Athletes of the Meet, respectively, with both student-athletes capturing two individual championships.
In the classroom, 27 of Fisher's student-athletes were named to the Landmark Conference Academic Honor Roll. Carioto received Academic All-American honors, and Carioto and Mayfield were named to the Academic All-District Teams. The cross country team was also honored as an USTFCCCA All-Academic Squad.
During the 2010 cross country season, Fisher directed CUA to a number of impressive performances, beginning in the fall when two of his student-athletes, Madeline Cronan and Mayfield, earned All-Landmark Conference cross country honors after posting top-12 finishes at the conference championship. Cronan then went on to earn All-Region accolades with her 28th place finish. Off the trail, the Cardinals were honored with 2010 Division III All-Academic status by the USTFCCCA after earning a cumulative GPA of 3.10 or better and scoring at the Regional Meet.
The 2011 track season saw Fisher mentor Carioto to the Landmark Conference and ECAC indoor shot put championships. It marked the first time in over a decade that CUA produced an ECAC champion. Carioto also went on to receive Academic All-District accolades. In addition, seven of Fishers's student-athletes were named to the All-Landmark Conference Teams, and on four occassions during the 2011 indoor and outdoor seasons Fisher had one of his student-athletes named a Landmark Conference Athlete of the Week.
During the 2009 cross country season Fisher guided the Cardinals to a first place finish at the first-ever CUA Invitational, which was the first race Catholic University hosted in over a decade. The Cardinals also won the Hood Invitational, behind a second place finish from Remy Ball ‘10. Ball then went on to earn All-Region accolades following a top-35 finish at the NCAA Regional Meet.
Fisher made a positive impact on the CUA program right from the beginning. He led the Cardinals to the Mason-Dixon Conference Cross Country Championship in 1979 and next went on to lead them to the 1982 and 1984 NCAA South/Southeast Regional Titles. Fisher’s 1982 team placed 11th at the NCAA Division III Championships. When CUA was a member of the Capital Athletic Conference Fisher coached three Runners of the Year as well as three Rookies of the Year.
In track and field, Fisher coached the first CUA woman (Carolyn Hughes Brady) to be named an All-American (1981-82) and helped her become the only woman in school history to win a national championship (1982 NCAA 800-meter outdoor title). Fisher also coached track star Janet Muckenthaler, who was named 1998 NCAA Woman of the Year for the District of Columbia. Hughes Brady and Louise Mallet-Kelly, a member of the 1984 NCAA Regional Championship squad, are both members of the CUA Hall of Fame.
Fisher enjoyed an outstanding running career at CUA as he was a member of two Mason-Dixon cross country championship teams (1973-74) and one indoor track title winning squad (1973).
Fisher also ran a leg on a two-mile relay team that placed fifth at the 1973 NCAA Division I Indoor Track and Field Championships. His outstanding performances earned him AAU (1973) and NCAA (1975) All-American honors.
Fisher, who competed for the Cardinals under former men's track and field coach Jerry McGee, is a firm believer in the many benefits of athletic competition.
Fisher graduated from CUA in 1975 with a degree in elementary education and later earned his master's degree in education from Morgan State University. An eighth grade social studies teacher in Howard County, Md., he is also the CEO and founder of First Generation College Bound, Inc., a company that has helped more than 750 students become the first people in their families to attend college. FGCB also hosts tutoring sessions and homework clubs for students of all ages. Thanks to Fisher's dedication, the organization has received hundreds of thousands of dollars in support from various civic groups in the D.C. area.
Fisher and his wife, Pat, live in Laurel, Md., and have two children, Mya and Joseph P.