Heather Hilliard graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from the University of California, San Diego in 1990. She was a four-year letter winner on the women’s soccer team (1986-1989) and she had the good fortune of playing her last three seasons at UC San Diego under coaching legend and La Jolla Impact Technical Director, Brian McManus. During her collegiate playing career, Hilliard reached the NCAA Division III Final Four three of her four seasons. During Heather’s senior year, her team won the school’s first NCAA Division III National Championship. She holds the all-time career goal scoring record at UC San Diego (70 goals) and was a two time All American player.
Heather received her Master of Science degree in Sport Management from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1992. After graduating, she was hired at Wellesley College as the Assistant Director of Athletics. In 1994, she returned to her undergraduate alma mater, UC San Diego, where she was hired as Assistant Director of Athletics. She was nominated and served three years on the NCAA Division III Women’s Soccer Committee and was elected Chair in her final year on the committee.
Hilliard resigned from UC San Diego in 2000 to focus her attention on her growing family. She volunteered time coaching youth soccer and serving as a Recreational Division Coordinator for Carlsbad Lightning Soccer Club. After much volunteering success, Carlsbad hired Hilliard in 2007 as Director of Recreation and competitive soccer coach. As a competitive coach, she led her teams to countless tournament and league championships. During her tenure as Director of Recreation, the program grew from 800 to 1300 players, merged with another Carlsbad league and ultimately grew to 2500 players.
“Coaching youth soccer and serving as the Director of Recreation for the past 10 years has been a privilege as I have been able to help inspire players’ love of the game and give back to the youth of my community. I am honored and thrilled about the opportunity to work alongside Coach Kristin Jones and Coach Brian McManus as their vision and commitment to excellence in youth soccer is second to none. I look forward to being a part of the growth of the La Jolla Youth Soccer League.”