Steve Thompson has been appointed Director of Athletics at Eureka College, President J. David Arnold announced Thursday. Thompson, a 2001 graduate of the College of Wooster, has more than a decade of administrative experience in collegiate athletics, including five years at NCAA Division III Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. He will begin his responsibilities at Eureka on Jan. 6, 2014.
“I am extremely honored to be selected as the new Director of Athletics at Eureka College,” Thompson said Thursday. “The College boasts a rich tradition of academics and athletics that is supported so well by the faculty, staff, students and alumni. I am grateful for the opportunity provided by President Arnold and I am very much looking forward to being a part of the Eureka family.”
A native of Rittman, Ohio, Thompson will manage the overall operations of the Eureka department of athletics, ensuring the institution complies with NCAA Division III policies and overseeing all athletic department budgets. He will also lead recruiting efforts across all sports in collaboration with the Office of Admissions and will assist the Development Office in fundraising activities.
“Steve will be an energetic addition to the senior leadership of the college,” said Eureka College President J. David Arnold. “As a Division III college athlete himself, Steve understands the important role athletics plays in the student experience. With his leadership, enthusiasm, and keen vision, I am confident our student-athletes will continue to excel on and off the field.”
Most recently, Thompson was Assistant Athletic Director for Facilities and Operations at Kent State University, an NCAA Division I institution in Kent, Ohio. At KSU, Thompson directed the day-to-day operations of several athletic facilities, including 25,000-seat Dix Stadium, home of the KSU football team. Additionally, Thompson contributed to the strategic and long-term planning of the athletic department that encompassed the planning, renovation and construction of new field house locker rooms that served five KSU programs. He regularly worked with student groups and other campus organizations in the planning and implementation of the use of campus athletics facilities.
He also coordinated the game-day experience for KSU football, including student involvement and alumni relations. His role in the events helped increase attendance to more than 85,000 fans for the 2013 season. The Golden Flashes won the Mid-American Conference East Division and went to a bowl game for the first time since 1972.
From 2007 through 2012, Thompson was Assistant Athletic Director for Facilities and Operations at Case Western Reserve University, an NCAA Division III institution in the University Athletic Association. He served as a member of the CWRU department management team, directing a staff of four full-time employees and 50 student assistantss in day-to-day operations of athletics facilities and student recreation center. Thompson oversaw facility planning, renovation and various construction projects that included upgrades in the natatorium and softball facility.
Additionally, Thompson coordinated event management for 19 varsity programs and was the tournament director for five UAA conference championships, three NCAA Division III football championships, two NCAA Division III soccer championships and the 2012 NCAA Division III wrestling Midwest Regional championship during his time at CWRU.
Thompson earned a B.A. in history from the College of Wooster in 2001. A former NCAA Division III student-athlete, Thompson was a three-year letterwinner in men’s basketball, scoring 780 points in 78 career appearances. He served as team captain as a senior in 2000-01, leading the Fighting Scots to their first #1 national ranking in program history. In all, Thompson’s Wooster squads won 75 games, two North Coast Athletic Conference regular season titles, three NCAC Tournament championships and secured three NCAA Division III Tournament bids.
Upon graduation from Wooster, Thompson was the Home Events Coordinator and assistant men’s basketball coach at NCAA Division III Illinois College in Jacksonville, Ill. He directed game-day operations for 10 intercollegiate sports and managed all facility operations during home events. On the hardwood, Thompson’s basketball staff directed the Blue Boys to the 2003 Midwest Conference Tournament championship and the program’s first-ever bid to the NCAA Division III Tournament. The team was later inducted into the Illinois College Athletics Hall of Fame.
Thompson was the Equipment Coordinator at NCAA Division II Ashland University in Ashland, Ohio from 2003 until 2005. He later served as a graduate assistant at Kent State from 2005 through 2007. In his first tenure at KSU, he was the coordinator of sports camps and clinics, as well as the assistant facilities manager. He assisted with game-day planning and operations for various KSU sports, including football, before earning an M.A. in sports administration from Kent State in 2007.
Thompson and his wife, Laurie, have two children, daughter Addison, 2, and son Luke, 7 months.
Eureka College sponsors 18 varsity intercollegiate sports and competes as a member of NCAA Division III and the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. The Eureka football program has competed as an associate member of the Upper Midwest Athletic Conference since 2009.