JEFFERSON CITY, Tenn. (BP)--Carson-Newman College Athletics Director David Barger announced Feb. 17 that he will retire from full-time service on April 30.
The longest serving athletic director in the South Atlantic Conference, Barger will "for the foreseeable future" raise funds and friends for his alma mater on a part-time basis.
"Everything's good but the legs," said Barger, a 1970 C-N alumnus who was diagnosed with limb-girdle muscular dystrophy as an 8-year-old. Though not in pain or on medication – "whatsoever, other than maybe ibuprofen for soreness or normal stuff" – Barger is sure the time is right.
"I just can't do it full speed like I want to, like I have been able to, and I've always thought that should be the point when I try to find another way to help Carson-Newman," he said.
When the subject comes to what he calls the D-word – "because we don't say disabled" – Barger's voice takes on a certain resolve. "I have always been competitive; always had an athletic mindset. I'm a pretty stubborn guy with a determined point of view," he said.
C-N President Randall O'Brien shared Barger's decision with members of the Board of Trustees' executive committee during their regular spring meeting. Committee members then acted on a motion that deemed Barger will receive emeritus status on May 1, putting him in a two-member club with Frosty Holt, who is credited with developing C-N's strong athletic tradition from 1929 until 1968.
"David's career at Carson-Newman has epitomized our motto of truth, beauty and goodness," O'Brien said. "His work here is a testament to his devotion to God and he demonstrates it daily through his commitment to our student-athletes, our mission, our coaches and staff, and to making the program vital and viable."
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