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Four candidates for athletics director

MSU Denver will interview four candidates for the position of athletics director beginning this week.

March 16, 2015

MSU Denver will interview four candidates for the position of athletics director beginning this week, including one internal candidate.

On March 19, Debbie Hendricks, MSU Denver’s head women’s volleyball coach since 2000 and the senior woman administrator since 2013, will interview with the University’s senior leaders and Athletics staff. Under Hendricks leadership, the volleyball team has had 15 consecutive NCAA tournament appearances and six Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) championships. Hendricks has been named RMAC Coach of the Year three times over the course of her career at MSU Denver. She counts student retention and helping to mentor assistant coaches, most of whom have become NCAA Division I, II and III head coaches, among her many achievements.

Kurt Esser, senior associate athletics director at the University of New Mexico, will also interview at MSU Denver on March 19. In his current position, Esser helps oversee 450 student-athletes in 21 athletic programs and 125 staff members working in 10 athletic facilities. Prior to joining the University of New Mexico in 2007, Esser served as associate athletics director for marketing and communications at the University of Nevada for five years. He counts external operations, athletics development, marketing, strategic planning and program administration among his areas of expertise.

Dena Freeman-Patton will interview on campus on March 23. A professional administrator with 17 years of experience in intercollegiate athletics, Freeman-Patton currently serves as the associate athletic director for California State University, Bakersfield where she developed a comprehensive academic support program for student athletes. Before working at California State University, Freeman-Patton served as associate athletic director at Georgia State University for six years. She is a former student-athlete in basketball at Liberty University in Virginia.

Also interviewing on March 23 is Anthony Grant, who was recently promoted to interim athletic director at Millersville University in Pennsylvania having served as associate athletic director at the university since 2008. Previously, Grant served as athletic academic coordinator for the University of Iowa, where he earned his Ph.D. in health and sport studies with a concentration in athletic administration. He has 10 years of experience at the Division I and II levels, and counts sport oversight, personnel management, fundraising and budget analysis, and academic support program development among his areas of expertise.

Once MSU Denver officials identify a final candidate for the director of athletics position, he or she will meet with the University community.

MSU Denver’s longtime Director of Athletics Joan McDermott announced in December that she had accepted the position of director of athletics at California State University, East Bay. She begins her duties on April 1.