June 11, 2021 – CarrSports Consulting has been called in to help St. Bonaventure University (SBU) find a new athletic director. Last month, the university chose not to renew the contract of Tim Kenney, who held the role since 2015. Barb Questa, who has been the senior member of SBU’s athletics administration team for 30 years, was named interim director of athletics. She will continue to serve in that role as the search process takes place. “CarrSports Consulting is thrilled to lead the search for the next St. Bonaventure University director of athletics,” said Mike Thomas, managing partner of the search firm. “This search is a critical step in the future enhancement of success in the athletic department. I am confident that the CarrSports team, which has been recognized as the go-to partner for intercollegiate athletics and completed over 130 leadership searches, will deliver the next outstanding leader for the Bonnies.”
St. Bonaventure, located in southwestern New York state, will now formalize a search committee that will be finalized in the coming days to seek feedback regarding the qualifications, characteristics and experiences sought in the university’s next athletics director.
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Founded in 1858 in the interest of promoting Catholic-Franciscan education, St. Bonaventure University offers more than 50 undergraduate majors and programs including nine combined-degree programs (granting talented high school seniors provisional acceptance into medical school upon entry to SBU) and early assurance programs (allowing students to apply for early acceptance to medical school as SBU sophomores. The university also has nearly 20 graduate programs, 13 of which are available 100 percent online. SBU has 19 Division I sports, 18 of which are members of the Atlantic 10 Conference while its men’s lacrosse program competes in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference. Over 350 student-athletes make up the university’s athletics department.
Serving Intercollegiate Athletics
Since 1997, CarrSports Consulting has provided executive search and management consulting services to intercollegiate athletics. Comprehensive or partial search services are offered for athletic directors, head coaches (all sports), conference commissioners, and executive staff for intercollegiate athletics, as well as affiliated athletics organizations.
The firm has extensive experience in conducting national searches for athletics directors over the past two decades and is backed by over 135 years of intercollegiate AD experience on staff. CarrSports Consulting has successfully completed searches for athletics directors at Duke, Kentucky, Georgia Tech, Butler and other prominent Division I institutions; its client list includes other Atlantic 10 schools as well. It is led by Mr. Thomas and fellow managing partner Jeff Hathaway.
Mr. Thomas has 36 years of experience in major university athletic department direction, during which time he hired coaches who have led teams to conference championships and national prominence, achieved historic levels of fundraising, managed capital projects totaling over $400 million, raised student-athlete academic achievements to conference-leading levels, instituted cultures of strict NCAA compliance, negotiated multi-million dollar media, sponsorship and marketing contracts, and revamped staffing and financial systems.
His roles included director of athletics at the University of Illinois, the University of Cincinnati, the University of Akron, and Cleveland State University, as well as serving on executive staff at the University of Virginia and the University of Denver. Over the course of Mr. Thomas’ career, he has worked in the Big Ten Conference, the Atlantic Coast Conference, the Big East, the Mid-American Conference and the Horizon League.
Mr. Hathaway has a demonstrated history of accomplishments in enhancing academic and athletic success of student-athletes, fundraising, student-athlete well-being, marketing, communications, university and community relations, strategic planning and fiscal management while serving and leading a diverse population of outstanding student-athletes, coaches, and staff.
Most recently, Mr. Hathaway has been working as a consultant for higher education and intercollegiate athletics clients, including a number of outstanding institutions and conferences. He has also taught sports management classes at the graduate level.
Earlier this spring, CarrSports Consulting established a social justice recruiting team led by vice president Kevin Anderson. Working closely with Mr. Anderson in an advisory role will be Leonard N. Moore, former vice president for diversity and community engagement at the University of Texas at Austin. “In light of today’s media and intense public scrutiny, it is imperative student-athletes, coaches and staff establish and uphold the fight for social justice and stop systemic racism, hate and bias on campus,” said Mr. Anderson. “We must create an atmosphere for all student-athletes where they are included within the athletic departments and are seen as more than athletes across campuses.”
The CarrSports social justice program helps athletic departments create an atmosphere where all student-athletes feel included, are seen more than just athletes across campuses, and have conversations where the student-athletes’ voices are heard and action is implemented through a collaborative effort. “CarrSports will also be able to help develop a meaningful path to address and increase inclusion and diversity,” the firm said.
Contributed by Scott A. Scanlon, Editor-in-Chief; Dale M. Zupsansky, Managing Editor; and Stephen Sawicki, Managing Editor – Hunt Scanlon Media