Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity to retire at end of year

Julian Alexander | The Red & BlackGeorgia athletic director Greg McGarity watches play during a women’s basketball game against Missouri on Feb. 6, 2020.

Georgia athletic director Greg McGarity will retire on Dec. 31, the University of Georgia Athletic Association announced today. First reported by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, McGarity is stepping down after just more than 10 years on the job.

"I want to thank President Morehead for all of his support and guidance over the years," McGarity said in a press release. "To our coaches, athletic staff, and student-athletes — you have made the last decade the very best of my career, and I thank you for your dedication to excellence in athletics."

In the past decade, McGarity’s program collected seven national titles across its 21 teams. He initiated renovations and construction for multiple sports facilities, including the current $80 million expansion to the Butts-Mehre football training and practice facility.

His decision comes amid a turbulent fiscal year for the UGAAA due to COVID-19 canceling spring championships, condensing the football season and limiting fan attendance.

It was also a reflective year for the UGAAA as Georgia players, coaches and staff joined in nationwide activism toward racial justice this summer. In a board of directors meeting on Sept. 12, the UGAAA announced a program to assess its internal culture and develop inclusivity within the association.

After Dec. 31, senior deputy athletic director Josh Brooks will step in as interim athletic director. A 10-member committee chaired by UGAAA Board of Directors member Kessel Sterling will determine McGarity's permanent replacement.

Hired in 2016, Brooks previously oversaw the association’s expansion projects and football gameday operations. Darrice Griffin, deputy athletic director for administration, will assume Brooks' responsibilities.

"We have some highly qualified administrators at UGA who are ready and able to take on this role," said UGA President Jere Morehead. "However, the committee also will be free to consider sitting athletic directors at other major universities who have significant experience managing college athletic programs. I have asked the committee to move with deliberate speed to ensure a successor is in place and ready to lead in the near future."

Printed with permission from The Red & Black independent student media organization based in Athens, Ga.; redandblack.com/sports

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