July 21, 2005

CSUN A.D. Announces Job Change


CSUN A.D. Announces Job Change

Highlighting the university's commitment to enhance its athletic facilities, Cal State Northridge Athletic Director Dick Dull announced today that he has accepted a new position to spearhead private fundraising for improvements to key campus athletic venues.

After six years as athletic director, Dull will transition to become the university's executive director of development for athletic facilities, effective August 1. Janet Lucas, the program's senior associate athletic director/senior woman administrator, will serve as interim athletic director pending completion of a national search.

"Cal State Northridge has an excellent athletic program and I am proud of our accomplishments, including our move to the Big West Conference in mid-2001," said Dull. "But to enable this
department to reach its full potential, we need to enlist significant private financial support for upgrading our campus athletic facilities."

Dull said he had been considering the change for several months and recently made the request to the campus' administration. Dull said, "I look forward to this new challenge, because it joins the love I have for intercollegiate athletics, and my commitment to this institution, its leadership and our coaches, staff and student-athletes."

In recent months, Dull and other campus officials have crafted a more than $10 million package of priority athletic facility improvements that will require private funding. Those include $6 million to more than double seating in the Matadome, Northridge's main athletics venue, to 3,000 seats and other upgrades; $2.6 million to enhance and add 2,000 permanent seats for CSUN's soccer venue; and other improvements to CSUN's baseball venue.

In his new position, Dull will report to CSUN Vice President for University Advancement Judy C. Knudson, who is responsible for university fundraising. "I am so pleased to have Dick Dull spearhead this important athletics fundraising initiative," Knudson said. "This will greatly enhance our ability to support the needs of athletics and move the entire program forward," Knudson said.

Starting in September, the university also plans to launch an overall review of its athletics program through the work of a soon-to-be-formed blue ribbon commission. Its mandate will be to review the athletic program's organization, resources and focus, and help the department prepare a "roadmap" for the coming five years.

"All intercollegiate athletic programs have faced challenges in recent years, especially in terms of financial support," said CSUN Vice President for Administration and Finance Mo Qayoumi, whose area includes the university's athletics program.

"We need to be aggressive and creative in finding new funding sources that will support excellence in athletics," Qayoumi added. "And we hope to position athletics as a more central
presence in the culture of the campus and our region."

The commission is slated to complete its work and submit recommendations to Cal State Northridge President Jolene Koester by the end of 2005. Then with those findings in hand, the university in early 2006 expects to launch a nationwide search for a new athletic director.

Lucas will serve as interim athletic director in the meantime. "I'm very proud and excited to lead Cal State Northridge athletics during this important period for our program," said Lucas, who has more than 25 years of administrative experience in NCAA Division I athletics.

"During this time, we want to build on the strong foundation that has been established, with a focus on developing the success of our student-athletes, both in academics and athletics," Lucas said. "We also want Cal State Northridge athletics to be a tremendous asset and source of pride for the university and our entire community."

Lucas came to Cal State Northridge more than a year ago in June 2004 to assume the No. 2 position as senior associate athletic director. Previously, she had served for 15 years from 1989 to 2004 in a similar position at James Madison University in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Lucas has a bachelor's degree in physical education from Wake Forest University and a master of sports administration degree from Ohio University.

Dull is an attorney who earned his law degree and bachelor's degree in political science from the University of Maryland. Prior to CSUN, he headed athletics programs at Moravian College in Pennsylvania (1998-1999), the University of Nebraska at Kearney (1995-1998), and the University of Maryland College Park (1981-1986).

During his six years as Northridge athletic director, Dull also led the university to a record number of conference championships and NCAA team appearances since joining the NCAA Division I. Northridge athletics also achieved compliance with gender equity goals and the university invested $4.4 million in athletics facilities in the past five years.

In competition, the men's basketball team won the Big Sky Conference championship and participated in the NCAA tournament in 2001; baseball won the Big West championship and participated in the NCAA tournament in 2002, and the men's soccer team was an NCAA participant for three straight years in 2002, 2003 and 2004.

In women's sports, the basketball team was a Big West tournament participant in 2005; the softball team was an NCAA participant in 2001, 2003 and 2004; the golf team won back-to-back Big West Conference titles and was an NCAA participant in 2003 and 2004; and outdoor track and field has been an NCAA participant for five straight years.

Northridge athletics includes 20 NCAA Division I teams, 9 men's and 11 women's, in the Big West Conference and Mountain Pacific Sports Federation. The program involves more than 400 student-athletes, about 60 employees, and a budget of about $6.5 million.

- GO MATADORS -