The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference
The Official Website of the Southeastern Conference

Title IX Spotlight: Kris Schmidt

53 days ago
SEC Staff
Photo: SEC Staff

As part of the Southeastern Conference's celebration of the 50th anniversary of Title IX, the conference will spotlight former student-athletes that have gone on to successful careers outside of athletics.

An infielder on the Missouri softball team from 1985-88, Kris Schmidt set school season records for hits (77), batting average (.410) and putouts. A three-time all-Big Eight Conference selection, who twice earned all-Midwest honors, she was also named as an All-American in 1986.

When asked what the greatest benefit was by participating in sports, Schmidt responded, "It is very difficult to pinpoint the one greatest benefit. There were so many benefits to playing sports, particularly team sports. First, sports helped me to develop a strong work ethic, understanding that hard work and dedication lead to success on and off the field. Sports also gave me confidence. Confidence in myself, my athletic abilities, and my ability to compete at an elite level of competition. Sports also provided me with a community of teammates. Girls and women who I spent so much time with throughout my life. So many years practicing, traveling, and competing with teammates who all had the same goals."

Once her playing days at Mizzou were finished, she continued to play softball as a member of the 1990 Women's Class A national champions Ballwin Saints and the Raybestos Brackettes team that won the Women's Major national championship in 1991 and '92.

She played for the U.S. team that won a gold medal at the Pan American Games in 1991 and at the 1992 International Cup in Beijing, China. A native of St. Louis, Schmidt was an assistant coach at Missouri from 1989-93. Eventually, she changed career paths and became a member of the U.S. Secret Service. Over 23 years, Schmidt protected presidents, vice presidents and foreign dignitaries. She's worked all over the world, as well as aboard Air Force One and Marine One.

"Had I not played and coached softball at the University of Missouri, I would not have been on the U.S. National Softball Team or sought out and been successful in my career in the U.S. Secret Service," said Schmidt. "The benefits I gained playing sports and being physically active have all been a part of my post collegiate career. Coaching helped prepare me to be a leader/manager. My path then led to serving the United States as a Special Agent with the Secret Service, investigating financial crimes and protecting Presidents, Vice Presidents, former Presidents and world leaders. The benefits of playing sports, competing as a collegiate athlete, and competing at an elite level in sports, most certainly prepared me for my life as a Secret Service agent and beyond."

Schmidt retired from the Secret Service in September 2017.