A Message From Mark Massari: A Letter of Thanks to Gaucho Alums, Donors, Staff, Student-Athletes
June 18, 2014
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.
Mark W. Massari
Kim, Maddy, Joey