Pacific Lutheran University
Mental Skills Coach, Professor
Dr. Colleen Hacker, Ph.D. Professor, Sport & Exercise Psychology, has served as the Mental Skills Coach to Olympic and Professional athletes and teams for more than 20 years.
An internationally recognized authority on the psychology of peak performance, Dr. Colleen Hacker has served as the Sports Psychology Consultant to the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team for 12 years. During her tenure, The National Team won a Gold Medal at the 1996 Olympic Games, the 1998 Goodwill Games and the 1999 World Cup. Named as an Assistant Coach in 2000, Dr. Hacker helped lead the National Team to a Silver Medal at the Sydney Olympic Games and a third place finish in the 2003 World Championships. The team also won a gold medal in the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens, Greece. During her tenure, the United States was the only country in the world to finish in the top three of every major world championship in soccer history. In 2008, Dr. Hacker was chosen for her 4th Olympic Games Coaching Staff with US Field Hockey for the Beijing Games where the team finished 5th, the highest finish in 12 years. For the past 8 years, Dr. Hacker has served as the Mental Skills Coach for the USA Ice Hockey Team for 6 World Championships and two Olympic Games. The team earned a Silver Medal in the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games. This past year, Team USA captured the first Gold Medal in 20 years in a dramatic OT win in one of the most historic events of the Winter Games.
In addition to her work with the National Soccer Team, Dr. Hacker works with professional, international and Olympic athletes in a variety of sports. Her strategies for peak performance are sought by corporations, business groups, professional sport teams, civic organizations and both print and television media. Dr. Hacker has conducted extensive, applied research in the field of sport psychology with particular emphasis on peak performance, leadership and performance success and both player and team development.
Dr. Hacker has received numerous professional awards including the Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award (the highest teaching honor awarded by the University), the National Association of Girls and Women in Sport Pathfinder Award, the National Association of Sport and Physical Education Inspiration Award, the President Medal from Pacific Lutheran University, the American Psychological Association's Presidential Citation, the National Soccer Coaches Association of America Letter of Commendation, and the National Award of Excellence, to name a few. She received AASPs Distinguished Professional Practice Award, the first woman in history to achieve that honor. She is a member of the National Advisory Board for the Positive Coaching Alliance, is a Fellow of the National Academies of Practice (the first sport psychology consultant to achieve that distinction), was named by ESPN-W as one of 30 women in the country who "change the way sports are played. Dr. Hacker is a Certified Mental Skills Consultant through AASP and is a member of the USOC Sport Psychology and Mental Skills Registry.