Inside Iowa State

Inside Archives

Submit news

Send news for Inside to, or call (515) 294-7065. See publication dates, deadlines.

About Inside

Inside Iowa State, a newspaper for faculty and staff, is published by the Office of University Relations.

Aug. 12, 2005

Search under way for athletics director

Cyclone athletics director Bruce Van De Velde announced Aug. 8 that he is resigning, effective at the end of the year. He submitted a letter of resignation to President Gregory Geoffroy.

"The time has come for the university to seek a new athletic director. The turn-around of the department is complete," Van De Velde said during an Aug. 8 press conference. "I'm proud that under my leadership we have restored integrity, financial strength and academic and competitive excellence to Iowa State's athletic programs."

"In 2000, when I took over the department, we were in grave financial trouble. In college athletics, a strong economic engine is crucial for any successful programs. I leave the department at Iowa State with a $4.2 million reserve, newly negotiated corporate sponsorships and television contracts, an extensive marketing and fund-raising network that I believe will continue to generate income into the future so athletes will not have to worry about cutbacks."

Van De Velde will continue to serve as athletics director until his successor is appointed, or until Dec. 31, whichever occurs first. In addition, he will provide consulting services through June 2006.

"Our athletics program has made significant progress under Bruce's guidance, and I'm grateful for his enthusiasm and commitment to excellence in all phases of the program," Geoffroy said. "He has positioned the program well for his successor."

Specifically, Geoffroy cited facility improvements, personnel hires, the absence of NCAA compliance issues at Iowa State, competitive success of Iowa State teams and generally an optimistic, confident view of the future for the athletics department.

Geoffroy appoints search team

Later in the day, Geoffroy announced details of a national search to find Van De Velde's successor. Vice president for academic affairs and provost Ben Allen will lead a five-member search committee that also includes:

  • Peg Armstrong Gustafson, alumna, and founder and owner, Amson Technology LC, Waukee
  • Jeff Johnson, president, ISU Alumni Association
  • John Schuh, chair, Iowa State Athletics Council and distinguished professor of educational leadership and policy studies
  • Gary Thompson, alumnus, owner and president, Gary Thompson Oil Co., Ames

The search committee will be assisted by Baker-Parker and Associates, an executive search consulting firm based in Atlanta. The search committee will screen and interview candidates and recommend finalists to Geoffroy, who will make the final selection. Allen said the committee goal is to name a new athletics director this fall.

Ideally, Geoffroy said he'd like to find someone who can lead, motivate, relate well to a variety of constituencies inside and outside the athletics department, create an inspiring vision for achievement and be successful in getting people to work to achieve that vision, handle a complex financial organization and build financial support for the department.

Nominations may be sent to Athletics Director Search Committee, Office of the President, 1750 Beardshear; or e-mailed to

Van De Velde's record

Van De Velde became Iowa State's athletics director Nov. 15, 2000. He came to Iowa State from the University of Oklahoma, where he served as senior associate athletics director. Van De Velde holds degrees from Iowa State and the University of Iowa.

During Van De Velde's tenure as Iowa State's athletics director, athletic department revenues increased from $19.6 million to $29 million, More than 2,000 new donors have contributed to the National Cyclone Club. Major facility improvements include the Bergstrom Indoor Training Facility; the Lied-Hixson Student Success Center and Rod and Connie French Academic Center; new seating, signage and permanent lighting at Jack Trice Stadium; renovation of Hilton Coliseum; and improvements to the basketball, gymnastics, and volleyball practice facilities, and the swimming, softball, and soccer complexes.

Geoffroy shakes Van De Velde's hand

President Gregory Geoffroy and athletics director Bruce Van De Velde shake hands following Van De Velde's announcement Aug. 8 that he will resign from his post.Photo by Bob Elbert.


"The time has come for the university to seek a new athletic director. The turn-around of the department is complete."

-- Bruce Van De Velde