MARIETTA, Ga. – Life University announced recently that John Barrett is relinquishing his role as Athletic Director. Barrett, affiliated with Life U and its three-‐time NAIA National Champion basketball team since the inception of athletics in 1992, has served as Athletics Director since 2007.
When Life U decided to resurrect its athletic programs, President Dr. Guy F. Riekeman asked Barrett to lead the way as head basketball coach and Athletic Director. During Barrett’s tenure as basketball coach, the Running Eagles have won three conference championships and earned a bid to the NAIA National Championship Tournament every year. As Athletic Director, Life U has expanded from one fledgling team to eleven teams, while winning five national championships and having 17 student-‐athletes earn All-‐American honors.
Barrett’s decision to step down from his role as Athletic Director is something he had mapped out when he took the role. “In my mind, I had a time frame for getting to this point,” said Barrett. “When Dr. Riekeman approached me about restarting the program, my vision was to restore Life U to prominence in the NAIA in multiple sports. I feel like we have done that through the dedication of so many of our coaches, staff and student-‐athletes. And of course, we had the backing of the administration to see this through. Now that we have achieved that vision, the time is right for me to step down and make way for the next person.”
The ‘next person’ is Bill Firnbach, Barrett’s longtime assistant and confidante.
Firnbach has served as Associate Athletic Director under Barrett for the past seven years and will take over Barrett’s role immediately. Said Barrett, “Bill has been ready for this position for a long time. He has been my right hand man for so many years, and he is the perfect person to take over for me.”
Barrett will continue to be the head coach of the men’s basketball team, and at the
request of Riekeman, he will take on an expanded and innovative role with the President’s office. Said Riekeman, “Coach Barrett has been a huge part of Life U for so many years, and we cannot thank him enough for what he has done for theUniversity. I’m glad he has agreed to stay with us and continue to provide his expertise.”
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For more information about Life U Athletics, please contact Craig Dekshenieks, Sports Information Director at (770) 426-‐2833.
About Life University
Founded in Marietta, Georgia in 1974, Life University is a health sciences institution most known for its chiropractic program, the largest in the world. Life University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS) to award four-‐year undergraduate and graduate degrees in a variety of health care, science, business and general studies fields, and also has programmatic accreditation through the Council on Chiropractic Education (CCE) and the
Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND). The mission
of Life University is to empower students with the education, skills and values necessary for career success and life fulfillment, based on a vitalistic philosophy.