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Mike Howard Named New Director of Athletics

Mike Howard, a veteran intercollegiate athletics administrator and coach, has been named Director of Athletics at SUNY Plattsburgh.

Howard succeeds Bruce Delventhal, who retired at the end of 2015 after 10 years on campus.

No stranger to the inner workings of an athletic department, Howard has served as the Associate Director of Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreation at St. Lawrence University for the past 19 years. In addition, Howard has served as the director of the Saints’ men’s and women’s cross country and track and field programs since 1988.

Howard finds his experiences in coaching and administration primary factors as to why he fits into this role.

“I have spent my entire professional career, 27 years as a coach and 16 as an administrator, cultivating relationships with student-athletes, faculty members, parents, alumni, the community and supporters of our programs across the country,” said Howard.

“These interactions have allowed me to build a foundation of principles which I believe are consistent with highly-successful intercollegiate athletic programs and I am eager to share them with the Plattsburgh State community.”

As the Associate Director of Athletics, Howard’s responsibilities included scheduling for St. Lawrence’s 32 intercollegiate athletic programs, NCAA Division III compliance and eligibility for over 600 student-athletes, management of the main coaches office complex overseeing head coaches and assistant coaches, as well as assisting the Director of Athletics with personnel matters, enforcement of athletic policies, and organization of department, league, and NCAA gatherings.

As director of both the cross country and track & field teams at St. Lawrence, Howard has grown the program into one of the premier programs in NCAA Division III, having coached 65 individual All-Americans, three Individual National Champions and six NCAA Regional Championship teams.

Howard has been bestowed with numerous honors for his efforts at St. Lawrence, which include USA Track Coaches Association Regional Coach of the Year 10 times and being named Liberty League Coach of the Year 25 times. In addition, Howard was elected as St. Lawrence’s Student-Athlete Advisory Council Coach of the Year twice.

“I would like to thank President John Ettling, (Vice President for Student Affairs) Bryan Hartman and the entire search committee for their professionalism and support throughout the entire process,” he said.

“I would also like to thank the mentors I have had the pleasure of working with at St. Lawrence during my 28 year career, I have been fortunate to work with some exceptional leaders and I am eternally grateful for the opportunities I have been given along the way.”

The Department of Intercollegiate Athletics falls under the Division of Student Affairs at SUNY Plattsburgh. Hartman, who heads the division, said he looks forward to working with Howard as he makes his transition.

"My thanks go to the search committee, chaired by Dr. Mary Roden-Tice, for bringing five highly qualified candidates to campus,” he said.

“A highlight that stood out from all candidates was their collective acknowledgement of the success of Cardinal Athletics.”

A native of Saranac Lake, N.Y., Howard grew up a passionate fan of Plattsburgh State athletics and he is ready to embrace the opportunity to lead the Cardinals into the future.

“I look at this position as not only a chance to return home but more importantly a chance to work at an institution which is committed to the role of intercollegiate athletics on a college campus and on striving for much continued success in the future,” he said.

“I am humbled by the support I have already received from a staff full of exceptional coaches and look forward with great anticipation to the opportunities ahead for all of us.”

Howard earned a bachelor’s degree in government and a master’s degree in education at St. Lawrence. He will continue in his current role at St. Lawrence for the remainder of the academic year before joining SUNY Plattsburgh this summer. 

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