MSUToday
Published: July 16, 2018

Engler selects new MSU athletic director

Contact(s): Emily Guerrant University Spokesperson office: 517-355-6560 emilyg@msu.edu

EAST LANSING, Mich. – Michigan State University Interim President John Engler appointed Bill Beekman as MSU’s athletic director pending approval of the Board of Trustees during a special meeting on July 17. Beekman has served as interim athletic director since February.

“As I spoke with our coaches and consulted with trustees about a possible search, I heard from virtually everyone that they love the job Bill is doing,” Engler said. “I’m very confident Bill will excel. He is a person of integrity, attentive, a great listener, someone who really knows the university and he has a calming influence.”

Beekman will be responsible for oversight of MSU’s 25 varsity sports teams as well as the care of more than 800 Spartan student athletes. The position provides leadership in the areas of sports management, game operations, financial administration, personnel, fundraising, corporate interaction, facility management, marketing and communication.

“Leading the proud tradition of Spartan athletics is a great honor,” Beekman said. “Since I stepped in as interim athletic director, my focus has been the health, safety and education of our student athletes. My job, and the job of our department, is to give them the tools and support they need to be successful on the field, successful in the classroom and, most importantly, successful in life after they leave MSU. Spartan athletics has a championship history, and we will continue to chase those championship dreams, doing so with integrity and always striving to improve in every area.”

An MSU alumnus, Beekman has served his alma mater since 1995, assuming his most recent role as vice president and secretary of the Board of Trustees in 2008. Previously, he served as executive director of the MSU Alumni Association, senior adviser to the Provost and assistant dean for finance in the College of Human Medicine. In his prior roles, Beekman gained experience handling large budgets and managing large staffs, overseeing key negotiations and managing important relationships, including those with alumni, donors and corporate partners.

Beekman received his MBA from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University, his Juris Doctorate from Wayne State University Law School, and his undergraduate degree in justice, morality and constitutional democracy from James Madison College at Michigan State University.

In accepting this position, Beekman is stepping down as secretary of the Board of Trustees. MSU will work to replace this position as soon as possible.

Michigan State Athletics Directors
Charles Bemies: 1899-1900
George Denham: 1901-1902
Chester Brewer: 1903-1910, 1917, 1919-1921
John Macklin: 1911-1915
George Gauthier: 1916, 1918
Albert Barron: 1922
Ralph Young: 1923-54
Clarence "Biggie" Munn: 1954-1972
J. Burt Smith: 1972-1975
John D. Shingleton: 1975-76
Joe Kearney: 1976-1980
Doug Weaver: 1980-1990
George Perles: 1990-1992
Merrily Dean Baker: 1992-1995
Merritt Norvell: 1995-1999
Clarence Underwood: 1999-2002
Ron Mason: 2002-2007
Mark Hollis: 2008-2018