Gene DeFilippo to Retire as Director of Athletics at Boston College
CCHESTNUT HILL, Mass. (8-17-12)—Boston College Athletics Director Gene DeFilippo has announced that he will retire from his position on September 30.
“My wife Anne and I have been discussing this decision for some time and we agree that this is the right time for me to retire,” DeFilippo said. “It is also the right time for Boston College to have new leadership in the athletics director’s position. In light of my recent bout with melanoma, which is treatable, this decision became clearer to me this summer. After the intensity of 40 years of intercollegiate athletics, this change will enable me to spend more time with Anne, my three children, and our granddaughter, Katherine. I look forward to this next stage of my personal and professional life.”
After taking a mini-sabbatical, DeFilippo plans to teach courses in sports management and to work as a consultant.
DeFilippo will remain on the job until September 30. Beginning October 1, Senior Associate Athletics Director John Kane will serve as interim director until a successor is named.
Boston College President William P. Leahy, SJ, thanked DeFilippo for his vision, dedication and service to BC Athletics during his 15 years as AD. “Gene devoted himself to building a strong, successful athletics program, one that reflected BC’s commitment to quality academics and institutional integrity,” said Fr. Leahy. “Doing that has been his passion and joy, and the BC community, particularly our student athletes, have benefitted immensely from his care, advice and hard work.”
During DeFilippo’s years as athletics director, Boston College won four national championships in men’s ice hockey, 11 national team and individual championships in sailing, and enjoyed 12 consecutive winning seasons in football, with a total of 103 victories. He oversaw the successful transition to the Atlantic Coast Conference, considered among the best and most stable conferences in the NCAA, and led an athletics program where the graduation rates of BC student-athletes ranked among the highest in Division IA sports. In 2010, BC student-athletes earned the prestigious National Student Athlete Advisory Committee Award of Excellence in Athletics in recognition of the volunteer outreach and community service initiatives of BC’s 750 varsity athletes.
DeFilippo also worked to upgrade the University’s athletics facilities, including multi-million dollar renovations of Alumni Stadium and Conte Forum, new soccer, field hockey and lacrosse playing fields on the Newton Campus, an air-inflated bubble over Alumni Stadium for winter practice use, and a new Astroturf surface on Alumni Stadium. He played a key role in raising money to build the privately funded $27 million Yawkey Athletics Center, which included space for the BC football program and the Office of Learning Resources for Student-Athletes, and a function area for University events. During his years as athletics director, donations in support of BC Athletics rose from $5 million annually in 1998 to more than $20 million in 2011.
A 1973 graduate of Springfield College where he earned three varsity letters as a quarterback, DeFilippo served as graduate assistant football coach at the University of Tennessee and then assistant football coach at both Youngstown State and Vanderbilt universities before transitioning to athletics administration. He served as director of athletics at the University of South Carolina-Spartanburg, associate director of athletics at the University of Kentucky, and then director of athletics at Villanova University before being named AD at Boston College in 1997.
“I’d like to thank Fr. Leahy for allowing me to serve as athletics director for the past 15 years,” said DeFilippo. “He was always supportive and was the best boss anyone could have. I will always be indebted to him for giving me the opportunity to work at such a great institution.”