University of Nebraska at Kearney Chancellor Doug Kristensen announced the appointment of Jon McBride as Director of Athletics for UNK, subject to approval of the Board of Regents. Kristensen noted that both finalists, McBride and internal candidate head basketball coach and interim AD Tom Kropp, are highly qualified, making for a difficult choice but also assuring UNK of a capable administrator. “I appreciate Tom Kropp’s many contributions to this university,” Chancellor Kristensen said, “and I thank him for his fine service as Interim Athletic Director.”
Kristensen said McBride’s Division I athletics administration experience and his background in fundraising were important factors in his selection for the AD post. “Jon brings with him the experience of assisting in the administration of a successful, high profile Division I program that is noted for its integrity,” said Chancellor Kristensen. “His depth of knowledge relating to marketing and program development will be a tremendous asset as we deal with the many challenges that face UNK. His philosophies are consistent with the ideologies of UNK.”
McBride expressed enthusiasm for his appointment. “I’m honored and excited to have been selected; I’ve been preparing for this day for 20 years,” said McBride. McBride’s wife, Karen, is originally from Sutherland and they have spent their summer vacations in Nebraska visiting family for nearly 20 years. “The opportunity to work one-on-one with so many fine people is truly one of the greatest benefits of coming to UNK, the Kearney community and Nebraska. We already feel right at home,” he went on to say. “I’m looking forward to building upon the championship traditions of UNK.”
Kristensen thanked the selection committee and said, “We’re looking forward to this next chapter in our sports legacy.”
McBride has served as Assistant Athletics Director for External Affairs at the University of Florida in Gainesville since 1990. He has also held administrative posts in athletics at Saint Louis University and Louisiana State University. McBride has a bachelor’s degree in radio-television management and a master’s degree in sports administration from Ohio University.
Jon and Karen have two children, Eryn 15, and Kyle, 12. McBride is scheduled to begin his new duties on August 1.