A Message From Mark Massari: A Letter of Thanks to Gaucho Alums, Donors, Staff, Student-Athletes

Mark Massari
Mark Massari

June 18, 2014


Dear Friends:

I write today to inform you that I will leave my position as Athletic Director at UCSB this summer. I have accepted an offer to return to Oregon State University as Deputy Athletics Director. Several personal and professional reasons make this move important for my family and I at this time. The past six years at UCSB have been a remarkable time for my family and I. This is a bittersweet moment for us as we have developed so many wonderful and lifelong friendships. I am so very proud of all that we have accomplished together along this journey and have confidence plans are in place to accomplish amazing things in the future. I want to send you my deepest thanks for your support, both personal and professional. Your guidance, wisdom and support - both financial and otherwise - have helped to bring tremendous growth and success to Gaucho intercollegiate athletics. 

Our graduation rates for student-athletes is at an all time high, so are the number of donors supporting athletics annually.  Seventeen NCAA appearances, record crowds and thousands of hours donated to the community later, I beam with pride on what was accomplished collectively. In addition, my heart warms knowing a special era of alumni is again investing themselves fully for today's Gauchos, all shown through the honor bestowed to remarkable people in Jim and Cheryl Barber last spring. I have also been the luckiest man in the world to have met Phil Womble and have him in my life. So many more accomplishments, all equally as touching and why I was fortunate to lead a wonderful group of staff and student-athletes.

There is a saying amongst collegiate administrators that these student-athletes can really get into your heart sometimes – they have by the hundreds for me. My family and I are also extremely grateful to Chancellor Yang for this wonderful opportunity to serve you and be part of UCSB and Santa Barbara.

The job of Athletic Director is a good one made tremendous by the company I was blessed to keep. Thank you for being part of our lives. We have loved being Gauchos.

Most Sincerely,


Mark W. Massari
Kim, Maddy, Joey

To read UCSB Athletics' official release, please click here