Photo by Joseph Ravits
Matt Larsen has been named the 18th director of athletics at North Dakota State University. With Larsen’s experience in strategic planning, policy development, revenue generation, sport oversight, and facilities and budget management, he is the perfect man to fill the shoes of Gene Taylor. Here are some tidbits from his first formal speaking engagement.
Words From Matt:
“I have had the opportunity to get to know Gene over the course of the last year and a half. I think we would all agree that he is a first-class individual. Gene was one of the first people that reached out to me and congratulated me on this opportunity. Ultimately, his farewell press conference is why I applied for this position. A place that can evoke such sincere emotion is a place that I want to be and is a place that is pretty special. Gene, I thank you for all that you have done for NDSU.”
“A large part of who I am today is because of my mother, father and sisters. I know they are watching today. I want to thank them for the guidance, love and support throughout my life. Without them, today would not be possible. It was very important for me to have my wife and family here with me today. They are my life. I am forever grateful for their love, support and countless sacrifices they have made for my career. I love you guys.”
“Many people ask me, ‘Why NDSU?’ As I told the search committee, I am extremely picky. I have a long list of selective criteria for my next career move, all of which were non-negotiable. Academic strength and mission. You can’t fake good academics. NDSU certainly has that. As the AD, I need to believe in the product. Secondly, a president with great vision for the university and athletic program. An athletic department with which I could build upon a tradition of success. A community where my wife and I could raise our family. And lastly, but probably most important, a place that has quality people. Me and my family found all that and more here at NDSU. For us it was an easy decision.”