University at Buffalo - The State University of New York
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UB Stadium, North Campus.

About the Position

The University at Buffalo (UB) is seeking a highly skilled, experienced Director of Athletics (AD) to lead its Division I-A athletics program and further its achievement and excellence. The AD reports directly to the president, and has overall responsibility for all athletic, recreation and intramural programs, and basic (non-degree) physical education instruction, including the administration of UB’s Division I-A intercollegiate athletics program, with a commitment to student-athlete excellence in the classroom and on the playing field; the welfare of student athletes; clear compliance with all NCAA, conference and university policies; and fiscal integrity and responsibility.

Introduction to UB

UB is the largest, most comprehensive, research-intensive university within the 64-campus State University of New York (SUNY) system, and is SUNY’s primary center for professional education and training. It enrolls approximately 28,600 students (approximately 2/3 undergraduates and 1/3 graduate and professional students). UB is located in the Buffalo-Niagara region of the state, which is New York’s largest upstate metropolitan area.

UB Athletics

UB sponsors 20 intercollegiate varsity sports, including:

  • baseball
  • men’s and women’s basketball
  • football
  • rowing
  • men’s and women’s soccer
  • softball
  • men’s and women’s swimming and diving
  • men’s and women’s tennis
  • men’s and women’s track and field
  • women’s volleyball
  • wrestling

A total of 550 student athletes compete in the Mid-American Conference for all sports except rowing (Colonial Athletic Association).


  • A demonstrated record of successful senior level management experience and achievements in Division I-A athletics. While consideration may be given to exceptional candidates from a non-traditional background, the unique nature of the athletics industry makes it strongly preferable that the candidate bring Division I-A expertise and leadership experience to this position.
  • An understanding of major public research universities such as UB, and an appreciation of the appropriate role of athletics within that context.
  • The ability to function effectively as a member of the university’s senior administrative and academic leadership team, and as a representative and ambassador not only of the Division of Athletics but also of the entire university.
  • The ability to conceptualize and articulate a vision for the complex organization and program of UB athletics and to oversee the development and implementation of a strategic plan to achieve that vision.
  • A compelling record of achievements and contributions to the advancement of recognized excellence in a Division I-A athletics program(s) similar to the University at Buffalo, with evidence of meaningful work experience with outstanding leaders in the profession.
  • A record of and commitment to diversity and the development of an inclusive culture within an athletics program.

Management skills

Teamwork:  The AD must be able to establish consensus with shared respect, leading to a cohesive and effective staff, and partnerships both on and off campus.

Personnel management:  The AD must hire, develop and organize a highly competent and energetic staff within a collective bargaining environment. The AD must deal with all staff in a fair and consistent manner, setting high standards for ethical conduct, hard work and achievement.

Fiscal control:  The AD must provide oversight to the budgeting process as well as strong operational support to maintain proper controls on spending.

Public relations:  The AD must have experience in and an understanding of the importance and impact of effective marketing and public relations to build and enhance the athletics program. This includes personal, electronic and print communications with the athletics staff, university leadership, media and the community.

Negotiation:  The AD must be an effective negotiator for both the athletics program and the university.

Profession-specific expertise and expectations

Academic support and student-athlete welfare:  Student athletes’ academic success must be the first priority for the AD, who should work closely with faculty and academic support staff to encourage and acknowledge academic excellence, to ensure compliance with existing standards regarding eligibility and persistence, and to improve the Academic Progress Rate.

NCAA awareness:  The AD must have an informed understanding of NCAA governance, legislation and process, and the ability to recognize and engage in the significant issues, especially those that most affect the University at Buffalo and the Mid-American Conference.

Compliance:  The AD must establish expectations and create a culture of unequivocal compliance among student-athletes, coaches, staff and supporters.

Sports program development:  The AD must establish an expectation of competitive success among all head and assistant coaches, student athletes and support staff in the UB program, and must cultivate in all the desire, capability and resources to win in the MAC. This expectation of success applies across all sports, revenue generating and non-revenue generating alike.

Contracts and other legal issues:  The AD must be able to work with university and athletics staff for effective and expeditious completion of all contracts.

Marketing, promotions and media:  The long-term need for new revenue streams requires the AD to present significant knowledge, creativity and leadership for expansion in this important outreach.

Facilities planning and construction:  The AD’s expertise and direction in facility planning, design and construction will be essential to closing the gap between UB’s facilities and those of MAC peers.

Fund raising:  The AD must provide effective leadership in major gifts solicitation for facilities and endowments, and work with university advancement staff to maximize the productivity of other giving programs. 

Gender equity:  The AD must evince an understanding of the historical and current significance of gender equity in athletics programs, and a record of success in advancing gender equity.


Bachelor’s degree required; advanced degree preferred

Application Process

The University at Buffalo invites letters of nomination, applications, or expressions of interest to be submitted to the search firm assisting the University.  Confidential review of materials will begin immediately and continue until the appointment is made.  For full consideration, application materials should be submitted by April 20, 2012.  For additional information please contact:

Laurie C. Wilder
Executive Vice President and Managing Director

Daniel Parker
770-804-1996 ext: 116

The University at Buffalo is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer dedicated to the goal of building a culturally diverse and pluralistic university community committed to teaching and working in a multicultural environment.

Potential applicants who share this goal are encouraged to apply.