San Diego Wave name Camille Ashton as GM after Current exit

Camille Ashton is the new sporting director and general manager of San Diego Wave FC.

The announcement comes three weeks after Ashton announced she was leaving her role as GM of fellow National Women’s Soccer League club Kansas City Current.

San Diego had been without a general manager since Molly Downtain departed the role in mid-April, only a few weeks into the season.

“I’ve known Cami from back in her playing days, and her impressive track record and deep understanding as both a general manager and former player, combined with her passion and energy, make her an exceptional fit with this club,” Wave FC president Jill Ellis said in a statement.

Ashton joined Kansas City in January 2022, and later that year, the Current made it to their first NWSL Championship game, where they lost to the Portland Thorns. After a poor 2023 campaign, Ashton oversaw an offseason roster rebuild and an unbeaten start to this season.

Kansas City remains unbeaten and atop the NWSL through 12 games.

Kansas City’s offseason included the hiring of former United States women’s national team head coach Vlatko Andonovski as both head coach and sporting director. The latter title appeared to overlap with Ashton’s role and responsibilities as general manager. She left her role in Kansas City in May.

Ashton now joins a staff in San Diego with another former USWNT head coach. She will report directly to Ellis, a two-time World Cup-winning coach.

Ashton is now responsible for leading San Diego’s player acquisition and scouting, managing the coaching staff, and overseeing the team’s on-field budget.

Head coach Casey Stoney led the Wave to the NWSL Shield in 2023, one year after qualifying for the playoffs as an expansion team, an NWSL first.

Stoney and Ashton will now collaborate to maintain that success.

“This is a club with a clear vision for success and a commitment to excellence,” Ashton said in a statement. “I look forward to working closely with Jill, Casey, the coaching staff, support staff, players, ownership and front office to help this club win more trophies and make a lasting impact in this city.

“Being a part of the Wave and the vibrant city of SanDiego, with its passionate fan base, is truly special.”

Ashton, 34, is a California native and a former professional player. She played for three different NWSL clubs from 2014-2017.

She retired in late 2018 and began working in the sports and entertainment field, including as manager of talent development for the WWE before joining the Current.

The Wave have struggled with consistency this year and currently sit ninth in the NWSL table, outside the playoff line.

Stoney recently signed a contract extension to remain as the coach through 2027, with a mutual option for 2028.

The commitment came in January amid reports that Stoney could be a candidate for the Chelsea coaching job upon Emma Hayes’ exit for the USWNT.

San Diego is currently in the middle of an NWSL record sale process.

Billionaire Ron Burkle is in the process of selling the team to the Levine Leichtman family in a two-part transaction that values the team between $113-$120 million, nearly double what the Portland Thorns sold for a few months earlier.