Sunday, February 14, 2016

West Virginia State: Loyd Steps Down, Burton Named Interim AD

INSTITUTE, West Virginia -- West Virginia State University (WVSU) Athletic Director and Head Baseball Coach Sean Loyd has stepped down as Athletic Director effective January 16, 2016, in order to solely focus his efforts on WVSU's baseball program. WVSU President Brian O. Hemphill, Ph.D. made the announcement following a request from Loyd to resign his administrative leadership of the athletic programs in order to pursue his passion for coaching baseball on a full-time basis.

A native West Virginian and alum of West Virginia State, Loyd became an Assistant Baseball Coach in 1994 before being named Head Coach in Waiting in 2013 and Head Baseball Coach in 2014. Additionally, Loyd has served in a dual role as WVSU's Athletic Director since 2008.

"Without question, Sean is a highly dedicated and very loyal member of the State family. He has faithfully served his alma mater with immense pride, while selflessly dedicating his efforts to providing a solid foundation on which our student-athletes excel in and out of the classroom," President Hemphill said. "Since becoming President in 2012, I have witnessed first-hand Sean's dedication to students, faculty, staff, and the local community. His leadership was instrumental in the construction of the D. Stephen and Diane H. Walker Convocation Center and the Gregory V. Monroe Athletic Complex, as well as the University's transition from the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WVIAC) to the Mountain East Conference (MEC). He is highly regarded as a leader on campus, within the community he serves, and across the state."

During Loyd's 22-year coaching career at West Virginia State, he has experienced much success at the individual player and team levels. He coached 46 hitters who have been selected to the All-Conference team, including eight who were honored as conference Hitter of the Year and 11 who were named All-Americans. He also coached eight hitters who have signed Major League Baseball contracts. Loyd has been a part of 12 NCAA tournament bids, including two Division II World Series appearances in 1999 and 2005, and 10 conference championships, including a second consecutive MEC championship victory in Loyd's first year as Head Coach. Loyd also spearheaded the creation of "The Bullpen," the fundraising and alumni arm of WVSU's baseball program.

In order to ensure a smooth transition, President Hemphill has appointed Nate Burton as WVSU's Interim Athletic Director. Burton currently serves as WVSU's Director of Development focusing his efforts on the University's fundraising activities, including, but not limited to, the University's athletic programs and related events. "With a strong professional background and extensive experience with intercollegiate athletics, I am confident Nate will provide strong leadership for the University's athletic programs and student-athletes," said President Hemphill.

Prior to joining WVSU in October 2014, Burton served as the Assistant Director for Athletic Development – The Seahawk Club at the University of North Carolina Wilmington (UNCW). Burton was responsible for planning, developing, and implementing fundraising initiatives for athletic scholarships. He assisted with the creation and implementation of the Dub Club initiative, which allowed supporters to form their own "Dub Club" based on common interests, and Club's competed throughout the year to raise scholarship funds for UNCW Athletics. This initiative raised over $325,000, helping the Seahawk Club increase its fundraising more than 40 percent over the previous year. Burton also worked with volunteer leadership and coordinated the Seahawk Club benefits program.

Burton also served as the Assistant Director of External Relations – Athletics at High Point University. During his tenure at High Point University, he assisted with sponsorships for regional businesses and supported the Panther Club's annual fundraising efforts. Burton oversaw all marketing, including materials and game day operations, for baseball, women's basketball, volleyball, women's soccer, and women's lacrosse.

He also worked at Clemson University, where he served as the IPTAY Scholarship Fund Intern in the Athletic Department. He assisted in soliciting members and managing of the IPTAY Collegiate Club, the IPTAY Rewards Program, and the IPTAY Discount Program. Burton hosted donor events, including the 2012 BCS Discover Orange Bowl. Other responsibilities included creating and implementing the marketing plan for the 2011 men's and women's soccer season. During that season, Clemson's soccer team set a new regular-season attendance record for a men's soccer game of 7,423. Home attendance for men's soccer games was ranked 10th nationally (20th in 2010).

Burton began his career as a graduate assistant for the Big Green Scholarship Foundation at Marshall University, where he earned a master's degree in Sports Management in December 2011. At Marshall, Burton assisted with daily operations and provided support to the Director with the Football Enhancement Fund and Tip-Off Club. Burton also planned special events and worked directly with donors on logistics, including ticketing and game day arrangements.

A 2009 graduate of Washington and Jefferson College, Burton was a four-year starter on the men's basketball team. In 2008-09, Burton helped lead the team to a 20-10 overall record for the program's second 20-win season. That year ended with Washington and Jefferson College winning the ECAC Division III championship. Burton has two children, Arabella and Sean, and resides in South Charleston.


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