The College of Arts and Sciences at New Mexico State University has named former women's basketball head coach Patrick Knapp as director of development. The former Division I coach brings more than 38 years of fundraising and development experience to the college.
"When he coached at NMSU, Patrick Knapp was named conference coach of the year and he has continued to demonstrate his passion and commitment during his long career in athletics," said Christa Slaton, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. "I fully expect him to bring that same high level of drive, discipline and enthusiasm to his fundraising efforts for the college."
Originally from Philadelphia, Knapp most recently served as the associate director of athletics at the University of the District of Columbia in Washington, D.C. Raising money and increasing awareness of the College of Arts and Sciences will be among his major responsibilities.
"At each step along the way, during my career and starting with New Mexico State, I was fundraising and interacting with the community," Knapp said. "So I'm doing the same thing now, I'm just moving over to the academic side."
Knapp coached women's basketball at NMSU from 1983-86. He was only the third head coach since the team was established in 1973, and the first male to ever serve in that position. Named conference coach of the year during the 1984-85 season, his most wins occurred the next year when he established a 20-8 record.
After NMSU, Knapp held head coaching positions at both Georgetown University and the University of Pennsylvania. At Georgetown, he captured the most victories in the history of Georgetown women's basketball and led them to an NCAA Tournament Sweet 16 appearance.
While taking a team to the NCAA championships is not the same as fundraising, Knapp believes starting with the basics and working hard is what creates winners both on and off the court. He said his first priority is to get to know the college and its needs.
"Everybody who comes through NMSU has to touch down in the College of Arts and Sciences in some way, shape or form," Knapp said. "And in my own opinion, that makes for a very well rounded citizen."
Knapp returned to Las Cruces to get involved with the community. Of course the weather and the beautiful scenery are added attractions.
"I enjoyed my time at NMSU, not only because it was a great opportunity, but the administration was fantastic to me and my family," Knapp said. "I got involved in the community and did a lot of fundraising for basketball at that time. It was a smaller town back then, but the people were fantastic and still are."