Dr. Michael F. Adams
Chancellor, Pepperdine University
Dr. Michael F. Adams, chancellor and distinguished university professor at Pepperdine University, serves in a senior administrative position designed to advance the institution’s marketing, reputation and support base.
He holds a Ph.D. in political communications from Ohio State University, where he was named a university fellow, the graduate school’s highest academic recognition.
For the past 16 years, Adams has been president of the University of Georgia, during which time UGA moved onto the list of America’s 20 best public institutions. Previously, Adams was president of Centre College in Kentucky. Prior to that, he served as vice president for university affairs at Pepperdine.
Adams began his academic career as an assistant professor at Ohio State, which he interrupted for a stint in politics. He was chief of staff for Sen. Howard Baker and a senior advisor to then Tennessee governor and now Sen. Lamar Alexander.
Nationally, he has headed the American Council on Education, the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities, the Association of Public Land-Grant Universities and the NCAA.
VP for University Athletics, Arizona State University
Ray Anderson is the vice president for university athletics and athletics director at Arizona State University. He started in that position in 2014, joining the Sun Devil family after serving as the executive vice president of football operations for the NFL for eight years.
Anderson served as the executive vice president and chief administrative officer of the Atlanta Falcons for four years and began his professional career as an attorney at Kilpatrick & Cody in Atlanta, Georgia, where he worked primarily in labor law litigation.
Anderson was appointed to the NFL Committee on Workplace Diversity and was named to Sports Illustrated’s list of the 101 Most Influential Minorities in Sports, as well as to the list of 100 Black Men of Atlanta Inc., a group dedicated to providing support and improving the quality of life for African-Americans, and to the board of governors of the Georgia World Congress Center Authority.
Anderson earned a bachelor of arts in political science from Stanford and a J.D. from Harvard Law School.
Exec. Dir. of Athletics, Boise State University
Curt Apsey, athletic director at Boise State, spent 16 years as the Broncos’ senior associate athletic director before serving as director of athletics for two years at Carroll College. During his first tenure at Boise State, he also served as interim athletic director in 2011.
In 2015-16, Apsey’s first full season overseeing Bronco athletics, Boise State claimed four conference athlete of the year awards, 38 individual conference championships and 130 all-conference honors.
Apsey earned a degree in physical education from California Polytechnic.
Director of Athletics, Western Michigan University
Kathy Beauregard, the director of athletics at Western Michigan University, has been involved with the Broncos for over 37 years and began her 20th season as athletic director in the 2016-17 season. She is the longest-serving athletic director in the Mid-American Conference and is just one of eight female athletic directors at the 128 Football Bowl schools.
Beauregard began her career at WMU as head women’s gymnastics coach and in the nine seasons after she arrived at WMU in 1979, Beauregard produced two Mid-American Conference title teams and was twice named the conference’s coach of the year.
As a professional committed to her field, Beauregard represented WMU in the NCAA Championships Cabinet and NCAA Football Bowl Certification Committee and serves on the NCAA Diversity and Inclusion Committee.
The Kalamazoo native earned her bachelor’s degree from Hope College in 1979 and her master’s degree from WMU in 1981.
VP, Global Sales, Legends
Mike Behan, vice president of Legends Global Sales, is responsible for expanding Legends’ collegiate athletics business, as well as the ongoing implementation of “The Legends Way” across existing partnerships. Under his leadership, Legends has secured partnerships with the University of Notre Dame, University of Oklahoma, University of Southern California, University of Louisville, Villanova University, DePaul University and the Rose Bowl.
Behan joined Legends from the National Basketball Association after serving as senior director of team marketing and business operations. In this role he was responsible for advising NBA, WNBA and NBA-Development League franchises on all aspects of business operations, including ticket sales, sponsorship development, premium seating, customer retention, digital sales and marketing.
Prior to the NBA Behan was the director of business development for the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Behan is a graduate of LeMoyne College in Syracuse, New York.
VP for Intercollegiate Athletics Programs & Director of Athletics, The University of Oklahoma
Joe Castiglione, vice president for intercollegiate athletics programs and director of athletics for the University of Oklahoma, inherited one of the most storied programs in college athletics.
During Castiglione’s 18-year tenure, he has overseen 13 national championships and 74 conference titles, including four in the 2015-16 academic year. He’s the 11th and second-longest serving director of athletics at OU.
Director of Athletics, University of Washington
Jennifer Cohen, director of athletics, has been with the University of Washington for 18 years and for much of that time has overseen the athletic department’s fundraising efforts. She joined the athletic department staff as assistant director of development before moving to the central development office to focus on fundraising efforts on behalf of the office of undergraduate education.
Cohen has led development efforts for a number of initiatives, including the renovation of Hec Edmundson Pavilion and the Conibear Shellhouse, the construction of the Dempsey Indoor Practice Facility, the Husky Legends Center, Husky Golf Center and various scholarship endowments.
A graduate of San Diego State University, Cohen went on to earn her master's degree in physical education with an emphasis in sports administration from Pacific Lutheran University. Her professional experience includes a variety of roles in intercollegiate athletics administration at Pacific Lutheran, the University of Puget Sound and Texas Tech University.
Chris Del Conte
Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, Texas Christian University
Chris Del Conte, director of intercollegiate athletics at Texas Christian University, has held his position since 2009. Del Conte has overseen a series of historic moments in TCU's athletics history that include the Horned Frogs' 2012 entrance into the Big 12 and nearly 300 million in donor-funded construction projects.
A new $164M Amon G. Carter Stadium opened in 2012, while a 72 million renovation of TCU's longtime basketball facility brought the opening of the Ed and Rae Schollmaier Arena in 2015. Under Del Conte’s leadership, the 2016 fiscal year broke records in Frog Club annual giving. For the fourth straight year, TCU covered its annual scholarship bill through Frog Club donations.
Del Conte received a bachelor of arts in sociology from UC Santa Barbara, where he was a track and field student-athlete, and a master of education, administration and supervision from Washington State.
Acting Director, eSports, University of California, Irvine
Mark Deppe, acting director of esports at University of California, Irvine, leads the effort to create the world's first collegiate esports program at a public university. Working closely with student leaders, administrators, faculty and industry partners, Deppe built a business plan that is cost-neutral to the university and that broadly approaches the world of esports through four pillars: competition, research, community and entertainment.
At UC Irvine, Deppe has advised student government leaders and coordinated some of university’s largest and most successful events — including six consecutive Guinness World Records. Deppe has a bachelor of science in psychobiology from UCLA and a MBA from Cal State Fullerton's Mihaylo College of Business and Economics.
EVP, Business Operations, Dallas Cowboys
Chad Estis, executive vice president of business operations for the Dallas Cowboys and AT&T Stadium, works with the business leadership team to grow and strengthen the businesses. His area of expertise includes corporate partnerships, stadium suites and ticket sales, media and branding and third-party events.
Before joining the Cowboys organization, Estis served as executive vice president and chief marketing officer of the Cleveland Cavaliers and Quicken Loans Arena. In this role, he oversaw all sales, marketing, community relations, communications, website and game operations.
Prior to starting as executive vice president with the Cavaliers, Estis was the vice president of sales for the Tampa Bay Lightning for two years. This followed his position in sales management for Palace Sports & Entertainment, which included properties such as the Detroit Pistons, Detroit Shock, Detroit Vipers, Pine Knob Music Theater and Meadowbrook Music Festival.
Estis is a graduate of Ohio University and its sports administration master’s program.
AD/Emeritus, University of Florida
Jeremy Foley was named University of Florida’s director of athletics in 1992. His 25-year run as athletic director, at the time the second longest tenured AD in Division I, ended in 2016 when he retired. He now serves as athletic director emeritus.
As CFO for the University Athletic Association, Foley spearheaded $307 million in capital improvement projects since 1999 and outlined a $100-million master facility plan before his retirement.
In an era when many Division I schools lost money on intercollegiate athletics, the University of Florida Athletic Association under Foley contributed more than $76M since 2006 to help fund UF academic endeavors.
During Foley’s administrative tenure, UF became the first program in collegiate history to own both the men’s basketball and football national titles in the same calendar year. Overall, UF won 27 NCAA titles and 130 SEC titles under his watch. Foley was named SportsBusiness Journal National Athletic Director of the Year in 2006.
Athletic Director, University of Colorado Boulder
Rick George, athletic director at University of Colorado Boulder, is the sixth full-time athletic director at UC Boulder, returning to the place where he helped play a role in the school’s first and only national football championship some 23 years earlier. Prior to taking up his role at UC, he served as COO for the Texas Rangers and later as president of business operations.
George worked in the college athletic world for the first half of his professional career, but stepped outside that box for the second half. Prior to the Rangers, George was EVP and chief of operations for the PGA Tour, working with the corporate marketing department in renewing sponsorships and creating new events. He also oversaw the tournament’s business affairs division and served as president of the Champion’s Tour for five years.
Carrie Gerlach Cecil
Crisis Management Expert
Carrie Gerlach Cecil, CEO of Social Media Sports Management, has pioneered revolutionary solutions to proactively address the increasing cyber, social media and crisis communications needs of SM2’s professional and NCAA sports partners.
Before coming to SM2, Cecil founded Anachel Communications, Inc., where she counseled owners, c-suite executives, head coaches and decision-makers from entities such as the NFL, SONY, NASCAR, Charter Communications and ESPN.
Cecil has also authored books for Simon & Schuster and Harper Collins and contributed to numerous broadcast and news stories. She began her career in the public sector working for Senator John McCain.
Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, Rutgers University
Patrick Hobbs serves as the director of athletics at Rutgers University and has over 20 years of leadership experience in higher education and public service. He joined the Scarlet Knights in 2015 after serving as dean at the Seton Hall School of Law for 16 years and overseeing the department of athletics for the Pirates from 2009 to 2011.
When the 2015-16 season came to a close, Rutgers was one of just two universities to have its men’s and women’s soccer, wrestling and men’s lacrosse programs all nationally ranked.
Hobbs received his bachelor of arts in accounting, magna cum laude, from Seton Hall University, his juris doctor from University of North Carolina and his master of laws from New York University.
Director of Athletics, Brigham Young University
Tom Holmoe, director of athletics at Brigham Young University, oversees a nationally recognized program with 21 intercollegiate sports, involving more than 600 student-athletes and a 150-person staff. Since Holmoe's appointment, BYU has captured 89 conference championships and more than 200 student-athletes have earned All-American status.
Holmoe came to BYU on a football scholarship in 1978 as a defensive back and was selected in 1983 NFL Draft by the San Francisco 49ers. After retiring from his seven-year professional football career, he returned to BYU to serve as a graduate assistant under LaVell Edwards and later accepted an offer from Bill Walsh to become the Stanford secondary coach.
In 1994, he returned to the 49ers as defensive backfield coach for two seasons, where he earned a fourth Super Bowl ring. Two years later, Holmoe joined the University of California staff as defensive coordinator and later became the head coach. Holmoe then returned for a third stint at BYU in 2001 as associate athletics director for development.
Holmoe graduated from BYU with a degree in zoology and later received a master's degree from BYU in athletic administration.
Director of Athletics, Villanova University
Mark Jackson, Villanova University director of athletics, is responsible for providing executive leadership, strategic direction and oversight for all of Villanova’s 24 sports and more than 500 student-athletes. He is also charged with managing the department’s fiscal affairs, personnel, strategic planning, facilities, general operations and public relations.
Since being named the director of athletics in 2015, Jackson has made a commitment to excellence in every facet of the student-athlete experience. His first year leading the program was successful on all fronts, highlighted by the men’s basketball team winning its second national championship in program history in 2016.
Before coming to Villanova, Jackson most recently served as the senior associate director of athletics and chief innovation officer at University of Southern California. In addition to his responsibilities on the Villanova campus, Jackson is the chair of the Big East Athletic Directors Committee and the Big Five Athletic Directors Committee.
Vice Chancellor - Director of Athletics, University of Arkansas
Jeff Long has served for nine years as vice chancellor and director of athletics at University of Arkansas. In Long’s tenure, Arkansas has captured 29 conference championships and advanced to 123 post-season competitions, including the school’s first Bowl Championship Series appearance in football and national titles at the 2013 NCAA Men’s Indoor, the 2015 NCAA Women’s Indoor Track and Field Championships and the 2016 NCAA Outdoor Track and Field Championships.
Prior to coming to Arkansas, Long held athletics administration, coaching or staff positions at nine FBS institutions in seven FBS conferences. Long serves on the College Football Playoff Selection Committee after serving as the inaugural chairman of the committee for the 2014-15 seasons.
Exec. VP of Regulatory Affairs and Strategic Partnerships, NCAA
Oliver Luck, the NCAA’s executive vice president for regulatory affairs, oversees all NCAA regulatory functions — enforcement, academic and membership affairs, and the eligibility center.
Luck joined the NCAA in 2014 after a four-year run as the director of athletics at West Virginia University. In 2005, he was appointed the first president of Major League Soccer’s Houston Dynamo, helping the organization to a pair of MLS Cup titles in his first two years. He also served as the CEO of the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority and as the president of NFL Europe.
Luck, a Rhodes Scholarship finalist and Cleveland native, graduated Phi Beta Kappa from West Virginia, where he was a three-year starting quarterback on the football team. He was selected in the second round of the NFL draft by the Houston Oilers and spent five years with the organization. He earned a law degree from the University of Texas at Austin, graduating cum laude. He is a member of the West Virginia University Sports Hall of Fame and CoSIDA Academic All-America Hall of Fame.
VP Revenue and Analytics, Ticketmaster
Brendan Lynch, vice president of revenue and analytics at Ticketmaster, leads the resale revenue management and segment leadership teams across the US. In this capacity, Lynch has helped build the companies’ dynamic resale fee management capability and launched the first category team focused on growing individual business segments.
Prior to joining Ticketmaster, Lynch worked at Beam Suntory where he held several roles, including leading North America Strategy and several spirits categories. Earlier in his career, he was a consultant at McKinsey & Company in the US and Japan with a focus on consumer industries.
Lynch has a bachelor of science from Penn State University and a master of business administration from New York University.
Head Football Coach & Chairman of Athletics, Coastal Carolina University; Chairman of the Board, TD Ameritrade
Joe Moglia is the head football coach and chair of athletics at Coastal Carolina University and chair of the board at TD Ameritrade. Most recently, he received the Vince Lombardi Hall of Fame Award for his career, character and leadership. He was also inducted into the Lombardi Football Hall of Fame.
In his last 10 seasons of coaching college football, Moglia has been part of eight championship teams. In his first five seasons at Coastal, he was named conference coach of the year twice, the AFCA Regional Coach of the Year and winner of the Eddie Robinson Award for National Coach of the Year in 2015. This season will be his 25th as a football coach.
Moglia worked at Merrill Lynch for 17 years before becoming the CEO at TD Ameritrade in 2001. He has received the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, the Vince Lombardi Award for Career, Character and Leadership and the Sharp Trophy for Leadership. He has been honored by the National Italian American Foundation, the Columbus Citizens Foundation, the South Carolina Football Hall of Fame and the American Institute for Stuttering.
Leonard Moore, Ph.D.
Senior Associate Vice President, George Littlefield Professor of American History, The University of Texas at Austin
Leonard Moore is the George Littlefield Professor of American History at University of Texas, Austin. He also serves as a senior associate vice president in the division of diversity and community engagement. He is a native of Cleveland, Ohio, who earned his B.A. at Jackson State University in 1993 and his Ph.D. in history from Ohio State University in 1998.
From 1998 to 2007, Moore was a professor at Louisiana State University, and he has been at the University of Texas since 2007. At Texas, he teaches courses on black politics that enroll between 500 to 600 students in each class. Additionally, he teaches a race and politics class at the UT Law School and directs study abroad programs in Beijing, China, and Cape Town, South Africa.
In 2015, Moore launched the Black Student-Athlete Summit, a three-day gathering to openly examine and candidly discuss the complex issues surrounding the Black student athlete. This year’s conference drew more than 300 participants. Moore’s work with student athletes has been featured on ESPN and in the New York Times and the National Urban League awarded him the Whitney M. Young Award for Urban Leadership for his work with student athletes.
President, Carolina Panthers
Danny Morrison served as president of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers for seven years. Under his leadership, the Panthers were innovative and aggressive in improving the fan experience while reaching new levels in corporate support and sponsorships.
Previously, Morrison spent five years as director of athletics at Texas Christian University, directing the development of the athletics program into one of the most successful in the nation. Before TCU, Morrison served four years as commissioner of the Southern Conference.
Morrison broke into athletics administration at his alma mater, Wofford College, becoming the school’s first fulltime director of athletics in 1985. After guiding the Terriers from the NAIA to Division 1-AA status during his 12-year term, Morrison served four years as a senior vice president at the Spartanburg, South Carolina, college.
Morrison lettered four years at Wofford in basketball and graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a B.A. in mathematics. Morrison also obtained an M.A. in administration and supervision from University of North Carolina and a doctorate in educational leadership from University of South Carolina.
President & CEO, Green Bay Packers
Mark Murphy is in his ninth year as the Packers’ President and CEO. Under Murphy’s guidance, the organization continues to rank as one of the NFL’s premier franchises, with highly successful operations both on and off the field.
Murphy, who holds a law degree and an MBA in finance, brought a unique and highly qualified background to his role as head of one of the NFL’s flagship franchises, drawing from a deep understanding and appreciation of the game that comes from an eight-year playing career with the Washington Redskins. He served a combined 16 years as director of athletics at Colgate University and Northwestern University and was an assistant executive director of the NFL Players Association and a trial attorney with the U.S. Department of Justice.
NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has appointed Murphy to the NFL’s Management Council Executive Committee, the Competition Committee, the College Relations Committee and the Health and Safety Committee.
Murphy also serves on University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s Council of Trustees and co-chaired the school’s most recent capital campaign. He is on the advisory board of the Positive Coaching Alliance and the board of directors of USA Football.
Athletic Director, Creighton University
As the 2016-17 vice chair and 2017-18 chair of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee, Bruce Rasmussen is entering his 23rd year as athletic director, and 37th overall at Creighton University. During his tenure, Creighton has risen to prominence with its success on and off the field, impressive facilities and record-breaking fundraising efforts.
Rasmussen was associate athletics director from 1992 to 1994, and before that he served as head coach of the Creighton Bluejays women’s basketball team from 1980 to 1992. In 2008, he was inducted into the Omaha Sports Hall of Fame, and in 2014 he was named Under Armor’s Athletic Director of the Year.
VP & Director of Athletics, Baylor University
Mack Rhoades was named Baylor University’s vice president and director of athletics by Interim President Dr. David Garland in 2016. He joined the Baylor family after serving as the director of Intercollegiate Athletics at University of Missouri, where he oversaw the university’s 20 Southeastern Conference programs, 300 employees, 550 student-athletes and an annual operating budget of $92 million.
Prior to Missouri, Rhoades served as the University of Houston’s vice president for athletics, where he led the resurgence of the Cougar program. From 2005 to 2009, Rhoades served as athletic director for the University of Akron. He has also served in athletics department positions at University of Texas El Paso, Marquette and Yale University.
Rhoades graduated from the University of Arizona with a bachelor's degree in health sciences. He earned a master’s degree in athletics administration/sports management from Indiana University.
John Roberson, CEO of Advent, has been with the company for over 15 years. Prior to purchasing Advent, Roberson worked as a brand manager for a 165-year-old fashion brand, was a co-founder of two consumer products companies and was the chief operating officer of a publicly-traded, television home-shopping network.
Roberson holds an MBA from Vanderbilt’s Owen School with a concentration in marketing and service quality and a political science degree with minors in art and English from Lipscomb University.
Executive Chairman, ESL
Steven Roberts, executive chairman at ESL, focuses on developing overall corporate growth strategies and partnerships in the areas of media, publishing, sponsorship and entertainment.
Prior to ESL, Roberts was senior vice president for DIRECTV, Inc., where he was responsible for developing and executing strategies designed to integrate the traditional DIRECTV entertainment experience on the set-top-box with emerging digital technologies.
Roberts joined DIRECTV in 2005 from Sportsvision, where he served as executive vice president. During his time at Sportsvision, Roberts brought the ubiquitous “yellow line” to every televised football game and also expanded the product line to include broadcast enhancements for FOX Sports, NBC, ESPN and Turner.
Before Sportsvision, Roberts held a variety of executive positions at Sony Corporation from 1995—2000, where he led Sony Sports and Entertainment.
Roberts holds a bachelor's degree from the University of California, Berkeley.
Economist & Writer
Andy Schwarz, a partner at OSKR, is an antitrust economist with a subspecialty in sports economics. Notably, he was the case manager for the NFL’s economic expert in L.A. Raiders v. NFL and for plaintiffs’ economic experts in O’Bannon v. NCAA, and the economic expert for the Keller v. NCAA settlement class. He has testified to the U.S. House of Representatives’ Committee on Education and the Workforce and has served as an economic expert in a wide variety of state and federal litigation.
Schwarz has been featured on ESPN, in the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Sports Illustrated, Bloomberg News, and USA Today. He is a frequent contributor to Vice Sports and Deadspin and has written for Slate, Forbes.com, 538.com and ESPN.com. He is also featured in Indentured: The Inside Story of the Rebellion Against the NCAA by Joe Nocera and Ben Strauss.
Schwarz holds an MBA from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA as well as an A.B. in history from Stanford University and an M.A. in history from Johns Hopkins University .
Performance Psychologist, Performance Enhancement Group
Jack Stark is a performance psychologist at the Performance Enhancement Group. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, and joined the faculty at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha as a medical psychologist in the departments of psychiatry and pediatrics. As a faculty member, he treated patients, conducted research and provided training to medical students and professional staff.
He later became a partner at Physicians Clinic, a multi-specialty medical clinic where he treated 10,000 patients as a licensed clinical psychologist.
Stark is the author or co-author of 12 books, and has worked as a sports psychologist for more than 30 colleges, numerous pro teams and as a part of 22 national championship teams. He established the National Center for Coaches to provide assistance to coaches and their staff, families and athletic departments.
Athletic Director, University of Florida
Scott Stricklin was named Athletic Director at the University of Florida in 2016 and brings 28-plus years of experience in intercollegiate athletics to Gainesville, including six as athletic director at his alma mater, Mississippi State University.
Stricklin has spent over 23 years in the Southeastern Conference, spearheading over $140 million in facility improvements while leading MSU, as well as significant increases in booster-club membership and donations and the highest-ever Learfield Director’s Cup finish in school history.
Stricklin earned the 2015-16 Athletic Director of the Year Award from the National Association of College Directors of Athletics, which highlights the efforts of athletic directors at all levels.
A forward-thinking national and regional leader in the field of athletics administration, Stricklin serves as chair of the SEC's Working Group on Fan Experience and has served as the SEC's representative on the NCAA Division I Leadership Council.
VP & Director of Athletics, University of Notre Dame
Jack Swarbrick, vice president and director of athletics at University of Notre Dame, has led many top athletics initiatives over the last eight years. He developed a plan for expanding Notre Dame Stadium to make it a year-round asset for the university and improved the game-day experience for student-athletes and fans. He launched Fighting Irish Media to deliver better information about and access to Notre Dame and its programs and met the performance needs of Notre Dame student-athletes through establishment of a sports-performance division.
During Swarbrick’s tenure, Notre Dame athletics has ranked number one among FBS schools in NCAA Graduation Success Rate surveys, and he presided over the best athletic across-the-board season in school history in 2013-14, with 22 of 26 sports advancing to post-season play.
Over the past five years, Swarbrick played a major role in significant announcements that positively impacted Notre Dame on the national collegiate scene, including Atlantic Coast Conference membership for all Fighting Irish athletic programs except football and hockey, the 2016 launch of the ACC Network and creation of the Bowl Championship Series four-team College Football Playoff.
Director of Athletic Training Services, Oregon State University
Fred Tedeschi was appointed director of athletic training services at Oregon State University in 2014. Previously, he was head athletic trainer for the Chicago Bulls for 16 years.
Tedeschi oversees the daily operation of OSU’s athletic training services in conjunction with Dr. Doug Aukerman, the senior associate athletic director for sports medicine, which includes implementation of philosophy and protocols of the department.
While with the Bulls, Tedeschi was twice selected the Joe O’Toole NBA Athletic Trainers Association Athletic Trainer of the Year. He had a six-year stint as a board member for the NBATA and was the organization’s chairman for the 2005-06 season.
Prior to working with the Bulls, Tedeschi served as the head athletic trainer at the University of California and at Vanderbilt University. He has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from University of the Pacific.
Jim Thornton, MA, ATC, CES
Director of Sports Medicine/Athletic Training Services, Clarion University of Pennsylvania
James L. Thornton, director of sports medicine and athletic training services at Clarion University, has been at Clarion since 1990 and has been a distance-education faculty member with California University of Pennsylvania since 1999.
Thornton chaired the NCAA athletic-trainer task force from 1997 to 2006 and served as the athletic-training liaison to the NCAA wrestling rules committee. He also helped create several health and safety publications, instructional videos and practice standards that have been distributed by USA Wrestling. Thornton has co-authored four peer-reviewed publications on liability in sports medicine and the role of athletic trainers. In 2008, he received the National Athletic Trainer Association College and University Committee’s Division II Head Athletic Trainer of the Year award. His sports leadership experience also includes four years as chair of NATA’s District Secretary/Treasurer Committee, three years as NATA president.
Thornton received an undergraduate degree from Utah State University and a master’s degree from University of the Pacific.
David Williams II
Vice Chancellor for Athletics and University Affairs & Athletics Director, Vanderbilt University
David Williams II is vice chancellor for athletics and university affairs and athletics director for Vanderbilt University. He guides the Vanderbilt athletics, recreation, intramural and club sports programs. He joined Vanderbilt after serving as a professor of law and in numerous administrative roles at The Ohio State University for 14 years.
Williams has firmly placed his stamp on Vanderbilt athletics and has positioned the program among the most innovative in the nation. The university's increased athletic success and investment in its athletics and recreation programs resulted in chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos asking Williams in 2012 to take on a larger role in shaping these areas of the university, allowing Williams to focus on maintaining and building on this momentum.
Williams has overseen the recruitment and hiring of nine outstanding head coaches and has overseen numerous facility upgrades, including an extensive refurbishing of Vanderbilt Stadium. He is also a member of the SEC team responsible for negotiating national television contracts for the conference.
Williams is a graduate of Northern Michigan University where he was a member of the track team. He also earned an MBA and a J.D. from the University of Detroit, and an LLM in taxation from New York University.