WICHITA — McPherson College graduate Rusty Allen of Tabor College has been named the KCAC’s Athletic Director of the Year for 2013-14.
He will be formally recognized at the upcoming KCAC Sport Management Conference held at Sterling College on Aug. 5. This is his second Athletic Director of the Year award in his tenure at Tabor, the first coming in 2011-12.
The annual Athletic Director of the Year Award is determined by a peer vote among the members of the KCAC Governing Council. By virtue of receiving this award at the conference level, Allen will also be considered as a candidate for the National Athletic Director of the Year by the NAIA Athletic Directors Association.
Allen serves Tabor as the Vice-President of Enrollment Management & Intercollegiate Athletics. He has presided over athletics since 2008, adding Enrollment Management to his title in 2011. He oversees an athletics department that supports more than 400 student-athletes in 19 sports with staff that exceeds 40 people.
"His leadership and guidance are the strength behind the recent growth and success of Tabor's athletic programs," Dr. Jules Glanzer, Tabor College president, said. "Rusty is dedicated to helping his teams and coaches succeed. He has a passion for being the best, giving attention to details, and working with people to reach their full potential."
Over the last six years he has worked in virtually every aspect to build a new football stadium/track and field complex and overhaul the college's baseball field and gymnasium. Recently, Allen has helped developed partnerships with the City of Hillsboro and Marion Public Schools to better facilitate Tabor's newest sports of bowling and swimming.
Since 2009, Allen has served as a member of the Executive Committee for the KCAC Governing Council in the roles of Vice-Chair (2009 - 2011), Chair (2011 - 2013), and Past Chair (2013 - Present). Allen was also an integral member of the KCAC Membership Expansion Site Evaluation Teams.
"His service to the KCAC has been selfless throughout as well as thoughtful, forward-thinking and providing a level of stability to the conference among his peers," said Dr. Scott Crawford, KCAC Commissioner.
In 2013-14, Tabor athletic teams combined for more than 25 community service projects, helping the women's basketball program to be selected as the first-ever KCAC Team of Character. Fourteen Bluejay teams earned NAIA Scholar-Team status. Fifty-four student-athletes were named Daktronics-NAIA scholars and six earned spots on All-America teams.
This past year, baseball and volleyball were crowned regular-season champions. Men's basketball, women's basketball and baseball took the conference tournament titles, advancing to NAIA national championships.
Tabor was chosen as one of nine opening-round sites for the NAIA baseball opening round. The Bluejays advanced from the ppening round to the NAIA World Series for the first time in school history, finishing fifth in the country. Tabor football advanced to the final eight teams following a road playoff victory over Benedictine. Eight track and field athletes qualified for both NAIA Outdoor and Indoor nationals in 2014, while three runners qualified for NAIA Cross Country nationals.
"Rusty's successes extend well beyond the athletic fields and into the classroom and residence life where he earned the respect of his faculty, coaches, and student-athletes alike," said Kent Allshouse, Athletic Director for Bethel College.
Prior to being named Vice President of Athletics, Allen spent seven years as the head women's basketball coach at Tabor College, stepping down after three straight seasons advancing to the of the NAIA D-II Women's National Basketball Championship "Sweet Sixteen.” His accomplishments as the women's basketball coach for the Bluejays also include two KCAC championships (04-05, 05-06) and two KCAC Coach of the Year awards (04-05, 05-06). Outside athletics, Allen has served in many roles at Tabor College including Residence Life and Housing Director, Director of Admissions, and Dean of Enrollment.
Allen graduated from McPherson College in 1985 with a degree in Secondary Mathematics Education and earned a Master's degree in Secondary Mathematics Education from the Peru State University in 1995. He resides in Hillsboro with his wife, Debbie. They have three children: Jordan, Jesse and Whitney.