Dr. Mary Kreis

Associate Professor

Department of Exercise Sciences and Sport Studies


Dr. Kreis was commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army's Medical Service Corps while completing her bachelor's degree. She completed her master's degree while serving on active duty in the Army.

After having ridden a bicycle cross-country while pregnant, Dr. Kreis was diagnosed with metastatic melanoma in her first week at Cal U. After having two surgeries while pregnant to remove the cancer, her daughter, Viva (for "live long"), was born healthy in January 2005. Before Viva was born, she had "ridden" more than 4,000 miles with Mom! Because of her connection with cancer, Dr. Kreis was one of 25 cyclists selected to ride in the 2005 Tour of Hope - a cross-country bike ride with Lance Armstrong designed to bring attention to the need for clinical trials in cancer research.

More recently, Dr. Kreis has focused her athletic goals on competing in marathons and ultra-marathons. She recently won her first 100 kilometer trail run and ran her second-fastest marathon at the Marine Corps Marathon, where she competed in honor of wounded servicemen and servicewomen.


  • Sport Event Management
  • Sport Marketing
  • Ethical Decision Making in Sport
  • Introduction to Sport Management
  • Socio-cultural Aspects of Sport

Research Interests

Dr. Kreis' research interests are in the areas of adventure and extreme sports as well as fitness and wellness programs.

Dr. Kreis served in the U.S. Army Reserves, having more than 15 years of service. Her last assignment was as a training officer in a Combat Support Hospital based in Coraopolis, Pa. For two years, she competed on the U.S. Armed Forces Pentathlon Team that has represented the United States in NATO competitions in France and the Netherlands.

Dr. Kreis was the captain of an adventure racing team that competed in honor of military veterans. This team, Team American Legion, consists of military veterans who represented the American Legion, the world's largest veterans organization, in competitions and through inspirational speaking engagements at military events, high schools and civic groups. The team competed in several multi-day events, including the Canadian Eco-Challenge, the Armed Forces Eco-Challenge and the U.S. Adventure Racing National Championships, where the team placed fifth for two years.

Professional Affiliations

Dr. Kreis is active in several national organizations in the field of sport management, including the Sport Marketing Association (SMA), the North American Society for Sport Management (NASSM), the National Intramural-Recreational Sports Association (NIRSA), and the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE). She has made presentations and led workshops at conferences such as NASPE, NIRSA, SMA and NASSM.

Service Learning Projects

Dr. Kreis is an advocate for cancer causes. She has been selected on several occasions to represent the Lance Armstrong Foundation in lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill. She has attended both of the LiveSTRONG Summits, designed to educate and inspire those involved in grassroots advocacy and fundraising. Dr. Kreis continues to volunteer to speak to groups that support the cancer cause, such as Relay for life, the American Cancer Society and One Voice Against Cancer.

While working on her master's degree and Ph.D., Dr. Kreis worked part time for several professional sports and entertainment organizations in game operations and event management. You may have seen her on the San Antonio Spurs' court, the Florida Marlins' field, the Florida Panthers' ice rink, the track at Daytona or the red carpet at a grand opening of Planet Hollywood.

  • B.S.: University of Virginia
  • M.S.: University of Texas, San Antonio
  • Ph.D.: Higher Education and Sport Management, University of Miami

Email: kreis@calu.edu

Phone: 724-938-4356

Office: Hamer Hall Room 237