Rick George was named athletic director at the University of Colorado on July 17, 2013, returning to Boulder where he helped play a role in the school’s first and only national championship in football some 23 years earlier.
George, 60, came to Colorado from the Texas Rangers baseball club of the American League, where he was named chief operating officer on October 5, 2010 with a promotion to president of business operations in February 2013. He agreed to a 5-year contract at CU, and he officially started on the job on August 12, 2013. In June 2016, the Board of Regents approved a contract extension through 2020-21, and in June 2019, the Regents once again extended him through the 2023-24 academic and athletic year.
In 2019, he was one of 30 named to the prestigious National Football Foundation’s “Team of Excellence,” highlighting those NFF board members who played football and have gone on to success in life. In the spring of 2020, on the 50th anniversary of “Earth Day,” he was the recipient of the individual achievement award recognizing his leadership in the sports sustainability programs he developed in the athletic department, as well as the Pac-12 Conference (in which in 2015 he drove the creation of the league’s sustainability conference).
Prior to joining the Rangers, George served as executive vice president and chief of operations for the PGA TOUR for two-and-a-half years (beginning in June 2008). He also worked for the PGA TOUR as president of the Champions Tour from 2003-08, and as the executive vice president for championship management his last three years there.
From 1998-2003, George served as President and CEO of the Fore!Kids Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization that raised money for children’s charities via golf-related events.
At the collegiate level, George worked in three major conferences (Big Ten, Big 8, Southeastern) in football operations, beginning with his alma mater, the University of Illinois, as football recruiting coordinator (1983-87).
He graduated from Illinois in 1982 with a Bachelor of Arts in Liberal Arts & Sciences Individual Study that had an emphasis on Sports Communication and Journalism. He was a four-year letterman at cornerback for the Illini, playing in 44 straight games and starting in 27 games in all, as he played two years each under coaches Gary Moeller and Mike White. Upon his graduation, White named him the assistant director for player personnel for the Illini, and a year later (1983), he assumed the all sports recruiting coordinator.
George is married to the former Nancy Green, and the couple has two grown daughters, Jenni Reed (husband Tom) and Christi, and two granddaughters (Harper and Maddie).