BEST SEAT IN THE HOUSE: New Hog Foundation Hire Has Had Whirlwind Year

by Chris Bahn  on Monday, Dec. 1, 2008 12:00 am  

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You've served in a lot of different roles within the scope of an athletic department. Is there a common thread to it all? How do all the different jobs relate?

I love to see us win, but more than that, I love to see young people reach their potential. It's nice when you get a call from [a former athlete] who has a real, professional job that they are proud of and a family. They can look back that they wanted to play in the NFL, but getting that degree and education was important. When you see that, when you get that kind of phone call, it's hard to beat.

There is a lot of talk about the Foundation needing to be more "transparent." What does that mean to you?

I hear that from people that support the Razorbacks and the Razorback Foundation. What I take from the word "transparency" or any other word you want to use, people desire, if they are giving money, they want to know what it's being used for and if it's making an impact. I think they want consistent answers. Whatever the question might be, when they call, they want consistent answers to what is going on. I believe that if people feel informed, if they feel informed, even if they don't agree it creates respect and trust. You can have a lot of disagreements, but still have respect and trust for one another. Are we informing people of what we're doing? Are we being great stewards with their resources? That's a phrase I use a lot. When I talk to somebody about supporting Razorback athletics, I want them to know that we're going to be great stewards with what they give us. That's not a reflection of what's happened here in the past. That's just me talking about what I want as we move forward. ... We want to be in the business of effective communication.

What is the key to growing the Razorback Foundation? How do you build on what's in place?

Again, we have to be effective communicators. We have to let them know that we need them. We have to let them know why this opportunity would serve them well. People take pride in supporting the Razorback Foundation and hence the athletic department. ... And like any organization, members are what drive it. Think about what would happen if half our members got one member [to join]. Think about that. Razorback fans know each other. They know who cares enough to join.

Complete this sentence. "I have the best seat in the house because..."

Can you imagine coming to work everyday with Coach [Frank] Broyles, Coach [Norm] DeBriyn and Coach [Harold] Horton? Do you know what kind of relationships those three have? You can't pay for a better resource. You can't pay for a better resource than those three in the Razorback Foundation with the relationships they've built. So for me to have an opportunity to learn from them and help meet people through them, it's priceless. You can't hire somebody with that. You can't research that. I get to walk into it and be a part of it. It doesn't get much better than that right there. There's no book you can buy with the stories I get to hear every day about the players, the coaches and the Razorback Foundation members who have been with Arkansas for decades. I don't think you can pay for that opportunity.




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