Bob Bowlsby enjoys his role as Commissioner of the Big 12. But on Friday (Sept. 28) he’ll take on a different leadership role as he kicks off West Virginia University Homecoming activities as honorary parade marshal for the 2012 Homecoming Parade. He also will be recognized during the halftime ceremony of the WVU-Baylor game on Saturday (Sept. 29).

Earlier this year, Bowlsby was named the fourth full-time Commissioner of the Big 12 Conference, earning praise throughout college athletics circles as yet another step in the continuing strength and stability of the Big 12.

“What an exciting time to be in Morgantown and participate in the tradition of Homecoming,” Bowlsby said. “As WVU and Baylor get ready to square off in the Mountaineers’ first appearance as a member of the Big 12, I can think of no other place I would want to be. This is a great celebration of our conference, and I’m looking forward to being a part of the weekend activities.”

Prior to his role at the Big 12, Bowlsby spent six years directing a Stanford University athletics department that sponsors 35 varsity sports and claimed an unprecedented 17 consecutive Learfield Sports Directors Cups, emblematic of the top overall athletics program in the country. The department maintained an annual budget of $75 million.

Bowlsby arrived at Stanford after a 15-year stint as the chief administrator for the University of Iowa Department of Athletics. In his final four years, he guided and supervised the merger of the Hawkeye men’s and women’s athletic departments that included 24 varsity sports.

Throughout his career, Bowlsby has emerged as a national leader in intercollegiate and amateur athletics. He was appointed to the United States Olympic Committee Board of Directors in 2007 and will complete that term at the 2014 Winter Olympiad in Sochi, Russia. He represented the NCAA as one of two voting members on the U.S. Olympic Committee. In 2002, President George W. Bush chose Bowlsby to be a member of the Commission on Opportunities in Athletics.

Bowlsby has previously served as president of the NCAA Division I-A Athletics Directors’ Association, chair of the NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee (2003-04, ‘04-05) and chaired the NCAA Management Council. In addition, he has chaired the NCAA Wrestling Committee and served on numerous NCAA committees.

In 2001-02, the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics named Bowlsby as Central Region Athletic Director of the Year and Sports Business Journal selected him from the four regional award winners as the National Athletics Director of the Year, highlighting his his commitment and positive contributions to campuses and the surrounding communities.

Before his stint overseeing the Hawkeye athletic department he served in the same role for seven years at the University of Northern Iowa. A native of Waterloo, Iowa, Bowlsby was named to that post in 1984. He previously served as Assistant Athletic Director for Facilities at the school.

Bowlsby earned his bachelor’s degree from Minnesota State University Moorhead in 1975 and his master’s degree from the University of Iowa in 1978. He is married with four children.

The WVU Homecoming parade begins at 6:30 p.m. on High Street. For more information about Homecoming activities, visit:



CONTACT: Tara Curtis, WVU Alumni Association

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