After 22 years as Chairman of the Department of Physical Education and Athletics and Director of Intercollegiate Athletics, Tom Weingartner announced that he will be taking on a new role at the University.
Weingartner’s newly created position will allow him to focus full-time on creating a program of fundraising and alumni engagement for athletics, effective July 15. He will report to Karen Warren Coleman, Vice President for Campus Life and Student Services, and work closely with development staff at the University.
“I recently passed a couple of milestones—I turned 65 a couple of weeks ago, and my youngest child just graduated from college,” Weingartner said, in a message to his staff. “While I’m not ready to retire just yet, it is a natural time to consider the next phase of my career. For many years, part of my work here has been to cultivate relationships and raise funds that will provide for the future of athletics at the University. I have enjoyed it a great deal, and believe in its importance.”
Warren Coleman thanked Weingartner for building a strong program of athletics, across a spectrum from intercollegiate competition to recreational sports to fitness.
“Tom has played an important role in bringing the program to its current high level,” she said. “During his tenure, individuals and teams in 17 sports participated in post-season competition, while four students have gone on to win Rhodes Scholarships. Tom also was instrumental in the planning and building of the Gerald Ratner Athletics Center.”
Following the 2011-2012 year, in which five teams went on to post-season competition, UChicago was ranked in the top 10 percent of Division III intercollegiate programs in the nation, in the Learfield Sports Director’s Cup.
Prior to arriving in Chicago, Weingartner served as athletic director and associate professor of human development at Manhattanville (N.Y.) College from 1985 to 1990. From 1979 to 1985, he was the athletics director and an assistant professor of human development at St. Mary’s (Md.) College. He began his career at Northwestern University as director of intramural, recreational and club sports in 1974.
Weingartner earned a bachelor’s degree from Stanford University, where he was a linebacker on the football team. He received a doctorate in educational administration from Northwestern.
Warren Coleman said the department will be in good hands, as Associate Department Chairs Rosalie Resch and Brian Baldea take over leadership on an acting basis. Warren Coleman said she would lead a national search for Weingartner’s successor.
“Athletics is an important part of student life, complementing academics and other extracurricular opportunities, while helping to foster leadership and teamwork. More broadly, the program provides a venue for building community among our students, faculty and staff,” Warren Coleman said. “Our commitment to this program remains strong, and we continue to look for new ways to invest in its success.”