Duke University has named Nina King the school’s next athletic director, according to reports Wednesday.
King, 42, will become the first black woman to head Duke’s athletic department in a historic move by the university. She will be promoted into the role after coming to Durham in 2008. She most recently served as the senior deputy athletics director for football and women’s basketball for the school, and will replace Mike White, who announced his retirement in January.
“I am deeply committed to continuing the strong tradition of academic and athletic excellence at our world-class institution,” King said in a statement. “My priority will be to ensure that the experience is truly elite for our student-athletes, coaches, staff and the entire Duke family. This is a tremendous honor, and I look forward to ushering Duke Athletics into the next chapter.”
As one of three black women to hold a leadership position in major college athletics, King was named to both of Sports Business Journal’s Forty Under 40 and Leaders Under 40 in 2018.
Prior to her time at Duke, she served under White at Notre Dame as the director of rules education from 2005 to 2008. White brought her to Duke after he made the transition 13 years ago. Overall, she will become the sixth female athletics director at a Power Five school.
“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, Duke President Vincent E. Price said in a statement. “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.”
According to the Charlotte Observer, King beat out several candidates for the job including Villanova athletic director Mark Jackson and Rice athletic director Joe Karlgaard.