University of Alaska Anchorage Athletic Director Keith Hackett announced Monday that he has resigned in order to take the same position at Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa.
Since assuming AD duties at UAA in the fall of 2013, Hackett has overseen an unprecedented run of success for the Seawolves, with the program producing 21 Great Northwest Athletic Conference team titles, 94 All-Americans, and national top-3 finishes in women’s basketball, women’s volleyball and men’s cross country. As a department, UAA has also placed among the top 35 of the Learfield Directors’ Cup rankings in each of Hackett’s four seasons, including a program-record eighth-place finish (of 307 NCAA Div. II institutions) in 2015-16.
“Keith Hackett has been a positive, transformative leader at UAA,” said Chancellor Tom Case. “He came to the university during turbulent and challenging times in UAA Athletics; Keith not only met those challenges, but he helped shepherd the Seawolves to the most successful seasons in program history. The student-athletes, coaches, university community and fans will miss him. We wish Keith and (his wife) Pat the best in their next assignment.”
“I am excited about the opportunity to continue my career in college athletics at a distinguished institution like Cornell College and to be much closer to our families,” said Hackett, whose son lives in Minnesota and whose wife has relatives in Missouri. “My experience at UAA has been terrific and I want to thank Chancellor Case for giving me the opportunity to lead the Seawolf athletic program. It has been a great privilege to work with and serve so many excellent student-athletes, coaches and staff.”
During Hackett’s tenure, Seawolf student-athletes also set high marks for scholastic achievement, achieving better than a 3.15 overall grade-point average in each calendar year and topping out with a semester-record 3.32 GPA in Spring 2017.
“With all of the team and individual success here at UAA, it’s easy to overlook the incredible success our student-athletes have achieved in the classroom,” added Hackett, who saw more than 100 bachelors and several master’s degrees earned by Seawolves since Fall 2013. “I’m also extremely proud of the community engagement by our student-athletes, coaches and staff, who have given more than 2,000 hours in the past year to volunteer projects.”
At Cornell College, Hackett will lead an NCAA Division III program that sponsors 19 sports, including football, and is a member of the Midwest Conference. Founded in 1853, Cornell has an enrollment of 1,000 and is affiliated with the United Methodist Church.
Hackett’s last day on campus at UAA will be July 7.