Jodi McKenna enters her 11th season at the helm of the Wesleyan women’s ice hockey program for the 2018-19 campaign. She has guided the Cardinals to back-to-back NESCAC tournament appearances over the last two seasons, both times earning the eighth seed and squaring off against top-seeded Middlebury in quarterfinal contests.
Before coming to Wesleyan, McKenna spent nine years as an assistant coach at St. Lawrence University, and then stepped into her first head-coaching role during the 2007-08 year. In her nine seasons with the Saints, she helped the unit qualify for the NCAA Division I Championships five times, making it to the Frozen Four on each occasion and reaching the title game in 2001. A certified strength and conditioning coach, McKenna developed and monitored the year-round training program at St. Lawrence.
During the offseason, she was active as a USA Hockey coach, working with the 18-19 Junior Olympic Festival and the 15-16 Festival in 2004, in addition to the Atlantic, Mid-Atlantic and Rocky Mountain District Player Development programs. McKenna was a coach and evaluator for the USA Hockey Rocky Mountain District Camp in May 2008 and an assistant coach for the U.S. U22 National Team camp in June 2008. She was also an assistant coach at the U.S. National Team holiday camp in December 2008.
After coaching the Cardinals for two seasons, McKenna went on a leave of absence from the team during the 2009-10 season, helping Team USA land a silver medal as an assistant coach at the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver, British Columbia. In April 2009, she was on board as an assistant coach when Team USA won a gold medal during the International Ice Hockey Federation World Women's Championship in Hameenlinna, Finland.
She was given a head-coaching assignment in August 2010, directing the National U18 squad during the USA Hockey Women's National Festival in Lake Placid, N.Y., as Team USA took on Canada for a three-game series. McKenna also directed the U18 squad to a gold medal at the World Championships in Stockholm, Sweden, in January 2011. Her most recent activity with the National Team came in August 2014, as she was on the coaching staff for the National Festival in Lake Placid once again, helping to select the members of the U18 and U22 squads for competition against Canada.
A 1998 graduate of Brown University, she was an outstanding defensewoman on the Bears’ women's ice hockey squad. During her four seasons, the final one as a team captain, she saw her Brown team capture an ECAC regular-season or tournament title three times. In her senior year, Brown played in the first-ever women's ice hockey national championship contest, falling to the University of New Hampshire.
After receiving a bachelor’s degree from Brown in 1998, she added a master’s at St. Lawrence in 2000. An adjunct professor at Wesleyan, McKenna acts as a strength and conditioning coach for the athletic department, in addition to her coaching duties. She lives in Middletown, Conn., with her husband, Kevin, and their son, Brayden.