Leigh Howard joined the Bison women's soccer staff in May 2015. Previously, Howard was both a coach and a student-athlete at Trinity College, where she received a bachelor's degree in psychology in May 2012 and a master's in American studies in May 2014.
In her two seasons as assistant coach at Bucknell, Howard has helped the Bison compile a 27-8-5 record, including a 14-2-2 mark in the Patriot League. Howard is part of a coaching staff that earned NSCAA Regional Coaching Staff of the Year honors in 2016, helping Bucknell capture the league championship and advance to the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2005. In August 2017, she was chosen to the United Soccer Coaches’ (formerly the NSCAA) 30 Under 30 Program.
While coaching at Trinity, Howard helped lead the team to its best season in program history in 2013. The Bantams posted a school-record 13 victories (13-4-1) and won a game in its very first NCAA Tournament appearance. That team was ranked No. 1 in the New England Region for part of the season and finished in the national top-25 for the first time.
Howard was involved with all aspects of the Trinity program on and off the field, and she recruited a student-athlete who became the NESCAC scoring leader and Rookie of the Year in her first collegiate season. Howard developed an annual Alumni Day event along with an online networking group that helped increase the program's alumni involvement by 250 percent. Howard also implemented an academic support program, which helped lead to a combined team grade-point average of 3.5.
Since June 2014, Howard has served as head coach with the FSA FC United ECNL U18 club team, and she has been an assistant coach in the Connecticut Olympic Development Program.
During the spring of her junior year at Trinity, Howard interned with Amandla EduFootball in Cape Town, South Africa. She helped organize and supervise leagues in 11 children's homes the Cape Town area, and she helped organize the Crime Prevention League in the township of Khayelitsha. Howard went abroad again in the summer of 2013, this time to Grenada, Nicaragua with the Soccer Without Borders program.
As a student-athlete at Trinity, Howard was named team captain as a senior, and she was the women's soccer program's first four-time All-NESCAC selection. Howard equaled the team record for points in a season with 26 on 10 goals and six assists as a sophomore, and her career total of 69 points (28G, 13A) ranks No. 3 in program history.
"Leigh has tremendous energy and passion for the game," said head coach Kelly Kuss. "She was a standout student-athlete at Trinity College and will be a great mentor for the women in the Bucknell women's soccer program. Leigh comes from a family with a strong background in soccer, and I am happy to see her pursuing her passion in coaching at the Division I level. Leigh's work ethic and dynamic personality will be very valuable for the program, and she will be a great addition to our staff."