NCAA and UofSC presidents to discuss leadership, college athletics Feb. 18

NCAA President Mark Emmert will join University of South Carolina President Harris Pastides, chairman of the NCAA Division I board of directors, for a conversation with students, faculty and staff about leadership and college athletics Thursday, Feb. 18.

The fifth annual President’s Leadership Dialogue at UofSC will take place at 4:30 p.m. in the W.W. Hootie Johnson Performance Hall at the Darla Moore School of Business. The event will feature an address by Emmert, a conversation with Pastides and a question and answer session with the audience.

The Carolina campus community is encouraged to attend the leadership dialogue before heading to the Colonial Life Arena where the women’s basketball team will tip off against the University of Georgia at 7 p.m. (doors open at 6 p.m.).

The President’s Leadership Dialogue is part of the university’s Carolina Leadership Initiative, which fosters leadership development among students and throughout campus.

Kirk Randazzo, director of UofSC’s Carolina Leadership Initiative, says college athletics was chosen as this year’s theme for the leadership dialogue because of the role that athletics play in the lives of student-athletes, the college experience, local communities and fans.

“Having Mark Emmert on campus represents a tremendous opportunity for our university and students,” Randazzo says. “We constantly see news stories about the influence of athletics on society and now we can hear from Dr. Emmert about how leadership operates in this area. Additionally, we have an opportunity to learn from Dr. Emmert and Dr. Pastides about how athletics and academics intersect and interact.”

Emmert has led the NCAA since October 2010, when he was named the association’s fifth president. He is credited with advocating for greater support for student-athlete wellness and academic success and ushering in a new governance structure for the Division I’s 350 colleges.

Prior to the NCAA, he served as president of the University of Washington, his alma mater, for six years, overseeing a rise in research funding and stature and the completion of a bold $2.6 billion fundraising campaign. He previously was chancellor at Louisiana State University and provost and chancellor at the University of Connecticut. He earned his bachelor’s degree in political science at UW and his master’s and doctoral degrees in public administration from Syracuse University.

Pastides was named chairman of NCAA Division I board of directors in January 2015. Before being tapped for the NCAA leadership position, he served as president of the SEC for two years. A scholar in epidemiology, Pastides served as dean of the Arnold School of Public Health before named university president in 2008. Under his leadership, the university’s eight campus system has experienced remarkable growth and positive change, impacting the health, prosperity and quality of life of communities throughout South Carolina.

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