News broke late Sunday that Associate Athletic Director and Associate Vice Chancellor Jeremiah Donati had been hired as TCU’s new Athletic Director, replacing Chris Del Conte. Del Conte left for the same position at the University of Texas on Saturday, and TCU moved quickly to replace him.
TCU Chancellor Victor Boschini and Mark Johnston, TCU’s Board of Trustees Chairman made the hiring of Donati official on Monday, at a press conference.
“We’ve been greatly blessed with much success in both academics as well as athletics, “Johnson said, “We cannot afford to rest on those laurels, in the coming weeks and months and years we will need continued vision and perseverance.”
Boschini followed Johnson’s remarks with some of his own.
“This is a a great day for TCU athletics, and I am thrilled to announce that Jeremiah Donati is the new athletic director at Texas Christian University,” Boschini said, “It’s all Donati all day.”
“We know that Jeremiah has tremendous experience, he has a stellar work ethic, and he has a sense of Horned Frog pride that will be instrumental in ensuring our continued success in our athletic programs.”
Donati has been at TCU since 2011, originally as the Executive Director for the Frog Club, before being tabbed as Associate Athletic Director and Associate Vice Chancellor for Athletic Development in 2013. In August of 2016 he was made Deputy Athletic Director.
“I’ve dreamt about this day for a long time. It’s an incredibly special day for me. I’m humbled, I’m overwhelemed by the support of everyone in the past few days, “Donati said in his first comments as TCU’s AD.
“A lot has changed since I arrived in 2011. When I arrived here we were in the Mountain West heading to the Big East, and hoping and praying for the Big 12. And now here we are.”
Donati also thanked his predecessor, Chris Del Conte, who he cited as a friend and mentor, and he spoke fondly about Fort Worth and TCU. “This is home to me. Coach Patterson said Fort Worth grew him up. you could say the same for me.”
TCU’s new athletic director has significant fundraising experience at TCU. He was a major player in acquiring funds for some of the renovations to Amon G. Carter Stadium, including the recently announced $100 million renovation for the addition of east side suites and other stadium upgrades, and the original $164 million renovations to the Carter.
He also had a hand in raising over $70 million to transform Daniel-Meyer Coliseum into Ed and Rae Schollmaier Arena, as well as the significant improvements/additions to Lupton Stadium, Garvey-Rosenthal Stadium, and TCU’s student-athlete facilities.
Donati made it clear that his first tasks as athletic director will be to finalize the fundraising for the newest renovation plans for Amon G. Carter, as well as meeting with each team and listening to them. He mentioned listening as a primary goal of his early on, as he sits with coaches and athletes across all sports now that he’s in his new role.
Beyond his TCU experience, Donati also spent time at Leigh Steinberg Sports & Entertainment, a sports agency and marketing firm that currently represents a slew of NFL players.