Georgetown announced Lee Reed as athletic director this morning, ending a yearlong search for Bernard Muir’s replacement. At a brief press conference, Reed spoke about his background and goals for his new position at Georgetown, which will begin on May 10.
Reed, who was introduced by University President John J. DeGioia and Senior Vice President for Strategic Development Interim Athletic Director Daniel Porterfield in Riggs Library, served in the same position at Cleveland State for eight years. Muir left to become the athletic director at Delaware in May 2009.
“It’s clear to me that like hand-in-glove, my background fits where this university is headed from an athletics perspective,” Reed said, “and I can’t tell you how excited I am to be a part of this and have this wonderful opportunity.”
Reed played basketball for four years at Cleveland State and was team captain during the 1982-83 season. He did not graduate from Cleveland State, instead taking a position as assistant men’s basketball coach at New Mexico for three years.
After managing several McDonald’s restaurants in the Cleveland area, Reed returned to New Mexico to earn his bachelors degree in university studies in 1992 and a master’s degree in sports administration in 1994. He worked in Eastern Michigan’s athletic department from 1995 to 2002.
“I’m confident that [Reed] will bring the same commitment to competitiveness and academic success to Georgetown that made him a strong, successful leader in Cleveland,” DeGioia said. “I’m looking forward to working with Lee and our colleagues across the university to build upon the rich history of Georgetown athletics.”
Under Reed, Cleveland State won 11 Horizon League Championships, and the Vikings claimed the James J. McCafferty Trophy as the league’s all-sport champion for the 2007-2008 year.
Reed has held a number of positions nationally, including spots on a committee for Minority Postgraduate Scholarship Awards, the NCAA Management Council and the NCAA I-AAA Athletic Director’s Association.
Reed, who also served on the NCAA Basketball Academic Enhancement Group, highlighted academics as a main part of the athletic department’s mission. In seven of his eight years at Cleveland State, Viking student-athletes combined to maintain a 3.00 GPA.
“We are here to serve our student-athletes,” he said. “There is no more important mission than making sure that [they] have a first-class, wonderful college experience.”
Another area Reed emphasized was his commitment to staying at Georgetown for the long haul. The Hoyas were left without a full-time athletic director when Muir went to Delaware after four years at Georgetown.
“If you look at my background, I don’t move an awful lot. That’s why I’m able to come here and make decisions that I’m comfortable with in the long term,” Reed said. “I’m here for the long haul.”
The lengthy search process was led by Porterfield and assisted by Turnkey Sports & Entertainment, an executive recruiting firm based out of New Jersey.
Reed’s wife, three of his children and his mother looked on as he spoke about his goals.
“I have a saying that I use quite often: ‘Great athletic programs are coach driven, student-athlete centered and administration assisted,'” Reed said. “We will make long-term decisions that are in [student-athletes’] best interest – from an academic standpoint, from a social standpoint and certainly from a competitive standpoint.”
He did not identify any specific goals that he would like to accomplish, instead saying he hopes he can leave his mark by improving the athletic department.
“I certainly want my tenure to be known as one that moved the university and the athletic program forward. It remains to be seen in what areas that will be,” Reed said.
Reed faces several challenges at Georgetown. In September, the athletic department was placed on three years probation by the NCAA for providing over $60,000 of excess work-study payments to baseball players.
Another area Reed will need to tackle is facilities. Muir declared Kehoe Field unsuitable for Division I field hockey in 2007, and MultiSport Facility has yet to be completed.
In 2007, plans were announced to erect a 90,000-square-foot, five-story practice facility near McDonough Gymnasium to be used primarily by the men’s basketball team. Construction of the project was anticipated to begin after the completion of the new science facility, which was tentatively scheduled for 2010 at the time.
“Obviously a facility that will enhance practice opportunities for our student-athletes is something that is of importance,” Reed said about the potential facility. “I need to get here and understand all that has gone on until this point to see where the plan is.”
After nearly a full year with an interim director, Georgetown hopes that Reed can bring his success from Cleveland State to the Hilltop.
“The one thing you have to understand about intercollegiate athletics is it’s more art than science,” Reed said. “Understanding what’s necessary and what’s needed to make a program successful is truly an art.”