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Asbury University's Gary Kempf to Take Over as Sterling College's Athletic Director
February 9, 2011
STERLING, Kan. - Sterling College announced today that it has hired Gary Kempf as its athletic director. Mr. Kempf will begin his duties after the conclusion of the current academic year. Kempf currently serves as the athletic director at Asbury University, located in Wilmore, Kentucky. Asbury University is a well respected institution with an enrollment of 1607. Current Athletic Director and Head Football Coach Andy Lambert will continue to serve as athletic director until Kempf arrives on campus, at which time Lambert will once again focus solely on Sterling's football program.
"Gary will bring a tremendous amount of experience and understanding with him to Sterling," said Dr. Paul J. Maurer, Sterling College president. "His background as a Division I athlete, coach, and athletic administrator, and that he has successfully served as an athletic director in a school with a similar mission as that of Sterling all serve to make him an outstanding addition to our leadership team. Gary also has experience in fundraising and facility development at both at Asbury University and University of Kansas, which are tremendous assets for Sterling College. Gary brings all the tools necessary to be successful at Sterling College. "
Donor development for the athletics program will be one of the major responsibilities for Kempf as Sterling's full-time athletic director. The addition of Kempf to the institution is a big step towards updating athletic facilities and increasing the College's competitiveness.
"Gary brings great experience, character and expertise to our school," said Lambert. "He has many years of experience as a collegiate coach, administrator and is familiar with Sterling College. I am extremely excited to see what he will do in his time here and am looking forward to the momentum he will bring to our College."
Kempf comes to Sterling College from Asbury University, where he has spent the past six years as athletic director for the Eagles. While at Asbury, he helped oversee the updating and renovation of three different facilities and was instrumental in adding baseball, softball, and golf to the Asbury program. With Kempf's leadership, Asbury grew from 120 student-athletes to 310 student-athletes. He has also been deeply involved as a mentor of coaches, athletics' staff, and student-athletes.
"Dorothy and I greatly enjoyed our time at Asbury and felt called to Asbury six years ago," said Kempf. "We feel the same calling to come to Sterling and want to be obedient to God's plan. Sterling has an outstanding athletic tradition and our vision includes helping student-athletes fully develop academically, spiritually, and athletically. We feel the excitement and desire to get better in every aspect of athletics and hope to enable the coaches to move their programs in the direction that they would like. Sterling has a desire for excellence in everything they do and we hope to help provide this opportunity to every student-athlete. It is our continued desire to work with athletes of faith and to enable them to reach the potential of their God-given talents."
Prior to serving as athletic director at Asbury, Kempf was Assistant Athletic Director at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas. While at KU, Kempf was highly involved in both fundraising and facility development.
Making the move to Sterling with Gary will be his wife Dorothy. Gary and Dorothy have two children, Paul and Faith. Paul graduated from Sterling College in 2010, where he played football. Faith attends Gardner-Webb University in North Carolina.
Andy Lambert has served as athletic director for the Warriors since the 2006-2007 academic year and has served as head football coach since 2004-2005.
"My time as the athletic director has been a joy," said Lambert. "I have counted it an honor to serve the programs in athletics and watch sports grow both on and off the field of play. The coaches I have worked with are outstanding people as well as wonderful mentors to the student-athletes they coach. The men and women in the athletic department have been true friends and colleagues I could always count on. I have been blessed to work for two presidents and learned much from the other administrators with whom I have served on cabinet. It has been a time of growth and learning for which I am very grateful."
During his time as athletic director, Lambert oversaw the $1.2 million renovation of Smisor Stadium. Lambert is also currently overseeing the updating of the Edwards Weight Center.
"Andy has done a tremendous job of balancing his athletic director responsibilities with his football coaching responsibilities for the past five years as well as developing a strong ethos in the athletic department," said Dr. Maurer. "I am deeply grateful for Andy's distinguished service to the College. With the strategic hiring of Gary Kempf, Andy will be able to focus on mentoring the young men and coaches in the football program, which is his deepest desire."
Lambert is second on the all-time wins list for a football head coach at Sterling College with 45 wins. Since coming to Sterling as head football coach in 2004, Lambert is 45-25.
"I believe that, in addition to adding significant strength to our entire institution, this transition also allows me to pursue with more focused energy and time a football program that is doing more in the classroom, more in the community and competing at higher levels on the field," said Lambert. "It is my hope that an improving football program both on and off the field adds to the strength of our College community as a whole."