Dr. Morris Kurtz
Since the autumn of 1974 Dr. Morris Kurtz has been actively involved in athletics and sports administration. He was awarded an MS in Physical Education in 1975 and a PhD in Sports Administration in 1981, both from the Pennsylvania State University. He had a long track record of success as a former athletics director and administrator.
Dr. Kurtz served as an Assistant/Associate Athletic Director at the University of Memphis from 1979-84 and then as Director of Athletics at St. Cloud State University from 1984-2012. During his 28 year tenure as Director of Athletics at St. Cloud State, he hired legendary U.S. Olympic hockey coach Herb Brooks and led the men’s and women’s hockey programs’ transitions to NCAA Division I. He provided the leadership and raised the funds necessary to establish the entire Husky Athletic Department as a national competitive force in the NCAA while expanding the number of teams and overseeing numerous construction and renovation projects.
Kurtz also led the planning and fund raising for the National Hockey and Event Center which serves as the home to Husky Hockey and in 2012 the arena’s office complex was named in his honor following a $1 million donation from a Minnesota based corporation as a way of honoring a career that helped change the landscape of college hockey and enhanced the state system of higher education in Minnesota.
Following his retirement from St. Cloud State in 2012 Dr. Kurtz again answered Penn State’s call and returned to his alma mater as Assistant Athletic Director for Intercollegiate Men’s and Women’s Hockey and Pegula Ice Arena as well as Director of Strategic Planning for the Penn State Athletic Department. Under his confident and visionary leadership style, and exhibiting savvy marketing, promotion and ticketing acumen, Penn State Hockey witnessed a two year period of phenomenal growth and success including leading the NCAA by playing in front of 104.3% capacity crowds.
He retired from Penn State on July 31, 2015 leaving an important legacy not only at St. Cloud State and Penn State but indeed throughout Minnesota and Pennsylvania.