Wright Named Asst. VP/Sr. Assoc. AD for Athletics Development

GO KNIGHTS Mark Wright
Mark Wright

May 3, 2013

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By Andy Seeley

ORLANDO, Fla. (UCFAthletics.com) – Mark Wright has been appointed to the post of Assistant Vice President/Senior Associate AD for Athletics Development at UCF. Wright brings more than two decades of development and athletic experience to his new position with the Knights.

Wright has a strong background in athletic and academic development, external relations, strategic planning, campaign leadership, facilities planning and construction, sports marketing, ticket sales and alumni engagement. He brings more than 20 years of progressive experience in the SEC, Big Ten, Big East, Atlantic 10 and Atlantic Sun to UCF.

“This is a very important hire for us and I’m very pleased that Mark has decided to join our team at UCF,” UCF Vice President and Director of Athletics Todd Stansbury said. “Mark brings exactly the kind of background and personality we need in this position. He’s been a student-athlete, a coach and an administrator, so he understands collegiate athletics from virtually every angle. He’s a genuine person and I believe he will relate well to our donor base. We’re looking forward to his arrival on campus.”

Wright is scheduled to begin work at UCF in June.

“With Todd Stansbury’s athletic vision and leadership and Bob Holmes’ thoughtful and effective work with the UCF Foundation, the university is well positioned for remarkable success in the coming years,” Wright said. “I am excited to help lead our efforts to provide student-athletes the opportunity to pursue their academic, athletic and personal dreams at UCF and also deliver the resources necessary to attract and retain championship-caliber coaches and student-athletes. I look forward to meeting and getting to know the special friends and staff of the Knights as soon as possible.”

At UCF, Wright will serve as a member of Stansbury’s Executive Management team. He will oversee the development and fund-raising department for UCF Athletics, while developing and maintaining strategic solicitation plans to enhance donations and expand the donor base. Wright will be responsible for a stewardship program for all athletics donors. He will also work closely with the athletics ticket sales and service department, providing leadership and direction toward the achievement of revenue and service goals.

For the past four years, Wright has served as the Managing Director of Development for Athletics at Marquette University. There, he was responsible for directing the fund-raising strategies and development activities for the department’s annual, discretionary, endowed and capital development initiatives. During his four years at Marquette, his team has booked more than $21 million in annual, endowed and major giving. The athletic endowment has almost tripled while annual giving has grown by 56 percent.

Prior to his time at Marquette, Wright spent four years (2005-09) at Saint Louis University as the Associate Athletic Director for Development. He spearheaded the development process of the Chaifetz Arena fund-raising campaign at Saint Louis. That campaign culminated in the opening of a new $81 million, on-campus, multi-purpose arena complex as the development team surpassed its goal of raising $50 million. Wright was also responsible for the athletic annual fund, which increased by 295% during his tenure. He also served as the sport administrator for baseball and softball.

From 2002-05, Wright was the Director of Development for Ohio State University Athletics. He worked as Associate Director of the National Commodore Club at Vanderbilt University from 1999-2002. Wright began his fund-raising career by serving as the Director of Development for Mercer University from 1996-99.

Wright gained experience as an admissions counselor/athletics eligibility coordinator (1995-96) and an assistant baseball coach (1992-94) at Mercer. He has also worked as a financial analyst for SunTrust Banks.

Wright holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business administration/finance from Mercer, where he was a pitcher for the Bears baseball program.