Hometown: Miami, Florida
Coach since: May 2014
Two-time U.S. interim coach and longtime assistant, development director and youth national team coach, Ellis became the permanent manager after Tom Sermanni’s surprise firing a year ago. With a short time to prepare the U.S. for World Cup qualifying, she set about urgently tinkering with an underperforming squad to find the right combination of players to help the team succeed in Canada.
It hasn’t always been a smooth path, but Ellis has her selected squad playing closer to the level expected from a U.S. women’s team, having won the Algarve Cup in spring 2015 that proved to be Sermanni’s undoing the previous year. Ellis coached the U.S. in the 2010 Under-20 World Cup with Sydney Leroux on the roster, and she'll face the woman she assisted with the U.S., current Sweden manager Pia Sundhage, in the group stage.