Northeastern introduced Jeffrey Konya as its next director of athletics and recreation on Wednesday morning at a press conference in the Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex, where university leaders praised him as a “skilled leader” with a “clear vision for the future.”
“Jeff is a person who is entrepreneurial, who is innovative, who wants to win, but who also wants to focus on academic excellence,” said Northeastern President Joseph E. Aoun, who presented Konya with a Northeastern hockey sweater and basketball jersey.
Konya will begin his tenure at Northeastern on Feb. 1. He will succeed Peter Roby, who will retire following the 2017-18 season after more than 15 years at Northeastern, including 10 years as athletic director. Konya joined university leaders in thanking and praising Roby for his leadership. “He’s established a tremendous foundation for Northeastern athletics,” Konya said.
Konya has more than two decades of experience in college athletics, most recently as director of athletics at Oakland University. At Northeastern, he will oversee the university’s 18-sport, NCAA Division I athletic program, which competes in the Colonial Athletic Association, Hockey East Association, and Eastern Association of Rowing Colleges. In addition, he will direct Campus Recreation, which offers more than 40 club and 30 intramural sports teams, as well as a wealth of physical education opportunities for Northeastern students.
In his remarks, Konya described himself as a “very innovative, out-of-the-box thinker but also a strategic planner.”
“I want to go from good to great,” he said. “I believe in providing a first-class experience. When we’re going to do things, we’re not going to take shortcuts. We’re going to be first class all the way around—or we’re not going to do it.”
He cited Northeastern’s athletic success and academic excellence as his primary reasons for choosing the university, pointing in particular to its signature co-op program, regional campus network, and commitment to lifelong learning. “That is a story of success,” he said. “That is something I am energized to be a part of.”