K-State announces extension for Currie

By The Mercury

Kansas State University President Kirk Schulz announced Wednesday that athletic director John Currie has signed a contract extension through the 2018 academic year.

The agreement adds two years to Currie’s current contract, securing his services through June 30, 2018. Schulz said that Currie’s annual salary will be $450,000 for 2012-13 and will increase by $25,000 for each remaining year on the contract. The extension also includes an enhanced retention incentive structure.

“John has provided tremendous leadership for our athletics department and entire university family since his arrival in 2009,” Schulz said. “Over the last three years, our student-athletes have enjoyed unprecedented success in the classroom and on the playing field, the department has seen record fundraising and a dramatic increase in members of the Ahearn Fund and over $100 million in facility improvements benefiting all of our 16 sports are underway.

“Great days are ahead for K-State as a member of the Big 12 Conference, and John’s continued leadership and vision will enhance our position as a national leader in intercollegiate athletics.”

Under Currie, the senior leadership team was rebuilt and has earned national acclaim by turning an inherited annual deficit into one of the NCAA’s most financially solvent programs, while initiating $100 million in comprehensive athletic facility improvements and the launching of K-StateHD.TV, all while navigating the tumultuous waters of conference realignment.

K-State’s fundraising efforts have been overhauled during Currie’s tenure with an emphasis on grass roots support, personal interaction and communication for Ahearn Fund donors of all levels.

K-State supporters immediately responded in Currie’s first year by increasing total annual fund cash gifts more than 50 percent versus the previous year to an all-time high of $14.47 million.

Fiscal year 2011 was even better, as total athletics giving set another all-time record exceeding $17.5 million, while a new record total is pending as with three weeks remaining in fiscal year 2012 the department has already exceeded the $20 million mark.

Additionally, the Ahearn Fund has grown by more than 2,500 members since Currie’s arrival and pushed past the 8,000 mark this past month.

K-State donors have stepped up with 11 private gifts in excess of $1 million since fall 2009, enabling the department to begin construction in 2011 on the $18 million Basketball Training Facility and building momentum toward the department’s new comprehensive facility improvement benefitting all 444 Wildcat student-athletes.

On April 28, 2012, ground was broken for Phase II of the Bill Snyder Family Stadium master plan, thanks to a national effort that has included a $5 million anonymous gift, the largest in the history of the department.

Currie received a celebrated national honor in 2011 as one of only two intercollegiate athletic directors named to SportsBusiness Journal’s prestigious Forty Under 40 list of national sports leaders.

Currie was a featured AD panelist at the 2011 SportsBusiness Journal Intercollegiate Athletics Conference in New York and has served as a faculty member of the Division I-A Athletic Director’s Institute.

Currently a member of the NCAA Division I Administrative Cabinet and the Fiesta Bowl Board of Directors, Currie also serves the Big 12 as a member of the Game Management/Officiating Subcommittee as well as the Championship and Awards committee.

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