Former athletic recruiter McHorney named school's Director of Athletics
May 14, 2009
Phil Brozynski, Media Relations Manager
Mark McHorney, a 2000 graduate of Marian College in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin and an assistant basketball coach and athletic recruiter at Benedictine University since 2005, has been named the school’s new Director of Athletics.
“The administrative team and I look forward to working with our student-athletes, coaching staff, athletic personnel, alumni, campus community and local community to provide a first-class athletic department for Benedictine University,” McHorney said. “This will be accomplished with our student-athletes excelling in the classroom and through continued involvement in the campus and local community.
“We expect our student-athletes, athletic personnel and coaching staff to conduct themselves with a high degree of character and class,” he added. “This, along with hard work and a dedication to the core values of Benedictine University, will chart the course for our vision.”
Three current members of the University’s athletic staff – head men’s basketball coach Keith Bunkenburg, head softball coach Katie Keller and assistant baseball coach Dave Swanson – were each named Assistant Director of Athletics. Their duties will include recruiting, compliance, scheduling and day-to-day game operations.
John Morris, formerly of the University’s Development staff, was also named Assistant Director of Athletics. He will be responsible for the University’s Eagle Club, a newly-founded athletic “booster” organization, and fundraising for various athletic department efforts and capital improvement projects.
Benedictine’s athletic department was reorganized in 2004 in a non-traditional structure. School officials believe the organizational structure now being put in place will better serve the needs of the University and its student-athletes.
“Benedictine athletics have always played a major role in campus life, student development, enrollment and leadership,” Benedictine Executive Vice President Charles Gregory said. “We have a vision for the future of athletics at Benedictine, and we believe Mark and his staff have the courage, conviction and clarity to make that vision a reality.”
McHorney earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration with a minor in athletic coaching from Marian in 2000 and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from Concordia University Chicago in 2004. He has been an assistant basketball coach at Benedictine since 2005 where he also supervised athletic recruiting and NCAA compliance.
McHorney resides in Elk Grove with his wife Tina and daughter Aubrey.
Bunkenburg, a Naperville resident, is a 1989 graduate of Illinois Benedictine College (now Benedictine University) where he starred for former Benedictine basketball coach Tony LaScala. A graduate of St. Patrick High School in Chicago where he was an MVP in basketball and baseball, Bunkenburg has won more than 200 games as the University’s basketball coach.
Keller is a 1996 graduate of Benedictine and one of the most decorated pitchers in NCAA Division III history. She took the reins of the University’s softball program in 1998. Her teams have won four conference titles and made three NCAA tournament appearances. Keller led the Eagles to a 31-12 record this past spring.
A four-year standout in football and baseball and a member of the Benedictine Hall of Fame, Swanson graduated from Illinois Benedictine College in 1976 as class valedictorian. A member of the athletic staff for the past 27 years, Swanson was presented with the Benedictine Life Award, the highest honor that the University can bestow upon an employee, in 2005.
Morris is a 2006 graduate of Winona State University and earned a master’s degree in sports management in 2007 while serving as a graduate assistant in the School of Kinesiology and Recreation at Illinois State. Morris has been a member of the University Development staff at Benedictine since April 2008 where he directed efforts to advance the institution through athletics.
Benedictine University enjoyed a very successful 2008-2009 athletic season, winning the South Division title of the 13-team Northern Athletics Conference (NAC) in men’s basketball, finishing second in men’s golf, third in women’s cross country, softball and baseball, and fourth in women’s volleyball and football.
However, athletic departments at colleges and universities nationwide face challenges on a number of fronts including rising travel costs, reduced alumni giving, facility maintenance and student recruitment and retention.
“There will be challenges ahead and many difficulties,” Gregory said. “We believe Mark and his staff will act, and act decisively and effectively.”
Benedictine University is an independent Roman Catholic institution located in Lisle, Illinois just 25 miles west of Chicago. Founded in 1887, Benedictine provides 56 undergraduate majors, 16 graduate and four doctorate programs. The Chronicle of Higher Education
recently ranked Benedictine University as the seventh fastest-growing campus among private nonprofit master’s universities, and Forbes
magazine named Benedictine among the top 20 percent of America’s colleges for 2011. Benedictine University’s Master of Business Administration (M.B.A.) program is listed by Crain’s Chicago Business
as the fourth largest in the Chicago area in 2011.