The Razorback Foundation has a new leader with Chris Wyrick being named Monday as the executive director of the Arkansas athletic fund-raising wing.
Wyrick, who has been with the Arkansas athletic department since 2008 and was most recently serving as Senior Associate Athletic Director of Development, steps into position that the Harold Horton had occupied for four years before retiring on July 31.
Razorback Foundation chairman Ken Mourton announced the appointment and believes he has landed the right man to continue the work of Horton, who has been a player, coach, recruiting coordinator and administrator at Arkansas for 42 of the last 52 years.
"As the Board moved forward to identify a new executive director, it quickly became apparent that Chris Wyrick would combine development expertise with a deep appreciation and understanding of the Razorback program," Mourton said. "His work on behalf of the Razorback Foundation with the R.S.V.P. program helped re-shape the future of our membership and support.
"Working alongside Jeff Long in the athletic department has given him an informed perspective of the unique spirit and statewide support of the Razorback fans, Mourton added. "Chris understands the need for that continued support and what will be required in the years to come to maintain a nationally competitive all sports program at the University of Arkansas."
Wyrick spearheaded the Razorback Seat Vaule Plan (R.S.V.P.), which helped raise an additional $6.5 million for Arkansas athletic department.
He also led the capital gifts and major gift-raising efforts to support the department facilities' master plan.
"I am honored to be selected to lead the Razorback Foundation at this important time in the history of our program," Wyrick said. "I am grateful to (Arkansas athletic director) Jeff Long for giving me the opportunity to come to the University of Arkansas and become a part of this special program.
" For the past four and half years, I have enjoyed working with the Razorback Foundation Board, Coach Horton and the Razorback Foundation staff as we achieved record levels in annual support and membership," Wyrick continued. "And now as I begin my role as executive director, I firmly believe we are in prime position to build upon that momentum and secure the needed support for the continued development of Razorback student-athletes."
Ironically, the announcement comes just two days after Arkansas defeated Jacksonville State 49-24 in its season opener.
The Gamecocks' head coach is Jack Crowe, who hired Horton as his recruiting coordinator in 1990 after Horton – a player at Arkansas in the early 60s and a coach in the 1970s - had an ultra-successful run as head coach in the 1980s at the University of Central Arkansas.
Wyrick, a 1992 graduate of North Carolina State, had previously worked at South Carolina and Vanderbilt before arriving at Arkansas in 2008. He and his wife Merrily have two daughters, Caroline and Caitlin.
He served as the senior associate athletic director for external affairs, which included oversight for marketing and promotions, collegiate licensing program, media relations, multi-media partners and the athletic department web site.
Wyrick also worked with the associate athletic director for finance and business in supervision of the Razorback Ticket Office while also serving as the sport administrator for men's basketball and men's and women's golf and spent the last year working with the Razorback Foundation.
Long lauded the Foundation's choice.
"I am appreciative of Chairman Ken Mourton and the rest of the Board members for their leadership in this time of transition within the Razorback Foundation," Long said. "By selecting Chris Wyrick as the new executive director, the Board has further demonstrated their commitment to securing the future sustainability of the Razorback Foundation and its support of our program. Chris has been an integral part of the remarkable success we have enjoyed in the past few years and I am confident the Razorback Foundation will flourish under his leadership."
Razorback Foundation Hires Wyrick
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