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Duke to Promote Nina King to Director of Athletics in Historic Move

Duke is promoting Nina King to be the school's next director of athletics, the school announced Wednesday.

King, 42, will become the first woman and first person of color to head Duke’s athletic department. She has been with the school since 2008, most recently as senior deputy athletics director overseeing football and women’s basketball, among other duties. She will replace Kevin White, who announced in January that he would be retiring from the same position this August.

“I am thrilled that Nina will be our Vice President and Director of Athletics,” school president Vincent E. Price said in a statement. “In her time at Duke, Nina has demonstrated extraordinary leadership, earning the esteem of our coaches, student-athletes, athletics staff and colleagues in athletics departments across the country. Nina is recognized as a committed advocate for inclusive excellence in collegiate athletics, and she has represented Duke on committees of the NCAA, ACC and many other national organizations. I can imagine no better person to carry on Kevin White’s exceptional record at Duke.”

King was named to Sports Business Journal's Forty Under 40 and Leaders Under 40 in 2018 as an acknowledgment of what she had already accomplished in the college athletics space. She previously worked at Notre Dame, under White, as the director of rules education from 2005-08.

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According to the Charlotte Observer, King emerged the choice at Duke from a field that included Villanova athletics director Mark Jackson, Rice athletics director Joe Karlgaard and Florida executive associate athletics director Lynda Tealer,

Following the promotion, King will also become just the sixth female athletics director at Power Five conference schools and just the third woman of color. 

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