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New members begin DIII Council terms

Leadership positions also change

By Gary Brown

New members began terms on the Division III Presidents and Management Councils with the close of the 2012 Convention.

The Presidents Council welcomed Pamela Reid, president at St. Joseph College (Connecticut), and Erik Bitterbaum, president at State University of New York at Cortland, who will serve four-year terms through the 2016 Convention.

New England College AD Lori Runksmeier joined the Management Council through the 2016 Convention. Both Steve Nelson (athletics director at the University of Wisconsin, Superior) and Terry Rupert [athletics director at Wilmington College (Ohio)] had their terms extended for another four years.

Both Councils also changed their leadership positions.

Western Connecticut State University President Jim Schmotter takes over as chair of the Presidents Council for a one-year term. He replaces Hope College’s Jim Bultman, whose term as chair expired after the 2012 Convention. Gustavus Adolphus President Jack Ohle takes over for Schmotter as vice chair of the Presidents Council.

For the Management Council, Redlands AD Jeff  Martinez takes over for College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin Commissioner Chris Martin, who still has another year left on the Council. Rupert will serve as vice chair this year.

Schmotter, whose term on the Presidents Council extends through the 2013 Convention, became president of Western Connecticut State in August 2004. He arrived there from Western Michigan, where he served as dean of the Haworth College of Business for seven years. Before that, he served as dean of the College of Business and Economics at Lehigh University. In his 14 years at the Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University, he served as associate dean and director of international studies, and taught business history and international management.

Schmotter earned his bachelor’s degree in history at Muskingum College. He received his doctorate in Colonial American history at Northwestern University and studied higher education administration at Columbia University.

Ohle has presided at Gustavus Adolphus since July 2008. Before that, he was president at Wartburg for 10 years. He previously was at Drake University for 12 years, first as vice president for institutional advancement and later as senior vice president for external affairs and secretary to the university. Prior to that, Ohle was vice president for advancement at Nebraska Wesleyan University for 10 years.

Ohle holds a B.A. in social work from Ohio Northern University and an M.A. in higher education administration from Bowling Green State University. 

St. Joseph College President Reid has served as the college’s chief executive since January 2008.

She had been provost and executive vice president for Roosevelt University in Chicago before that. Previously, she served in several leadership roles at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center. Reid also worked at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and at the University of Michigan.

She holds a B.S. from Howard University, an M.A. from Temple University and a Ph.D. from the University of Pennsylvania. 

Bitterbaum has been the chief executive at SUNY Cortland since July 2003. He came there after serving as president of West Virginia University at Parkersburg since 2000. His previous service was as vice president for academic affairs at Missouri Southern State College, vice president for academic affairs at Methodist College and associate provost at Nebraska Wesleyan University.

He has a B.A. in biology from Occidental College, an M.A. in biology from Occidental and a Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Florida.

New Management Council chair Jeff Martinez was named the director of athletics and physical education at Redlands in July 2000. He has been on the Bulldogs’ staff since 1983 in several roles, including head athletic trainer, assistant director of athletics and associate director of athletics. He also attained the rank of full professor in the spring of 1997.

His committee service includes having chaired the Division III Championships Committee and having served as the Management Council’s representative to the NCAA Committee on Competitive Safeguards and Medical Aspects of Sports and the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.

An Albuquerque native, Martinez earned his B.S. from Utah State University in 1982 and received his M.S. from the University of Arizona in 1983, where he served as the football graduate assistant athletic trainer.

Council vice chair Terry Rupert has directed Wilmington’s athletics programs since 1996 and was promoted to vice president in 2007. He has served as both chair and member of the Division III Interpretations and Legislation Committee, as well as the Division III Financial Aid Committee.

Before being an administrator, Rupert was a professor of sport management and physical education. He has also coached (football and track) in all three NCAA divisions after having begun his career as a high school football coach in western Pennsylvania.

Rupert earned a B.S. in health and physical education and an M.S. in sport sciences from Indiana University of Pennsylvania. He also has a doctorate in athletic administration and sport pedagogy from the University of Southern Mississippi.

Runksmeier, the newest member of the Management Council, has been the AD at New England College since 1999. Before that, she served in athletics administration at the College of St. Benedict and St. Cloud State University. Runksmeier earned both a B.S. in physical education and English and an M.A. in sports administration from Minnesota State University, Mankato.