UPLAND, Ind. – Taylor University and Dr. Angie Fincannon announced on Monday that she will be stepping down as the school's athletics director to take the position of Vice Chancellor of Advancement at NCAA Division I Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne (IPFW).
Fincannon will remain on staff at TU through June 26, before ending a successful seven-year tenure at the helm of the Trojan athletics department and a 23-year career at Taylor.
"I am humbled and grateful to Dr. Carwein and the IPFW community for their encouragement and support for this new and exciting leadership opportunity," expressed Fincannon. "It is bittersweet to leave, as I have loved my time with Taylor and the wonderful people of this University. I am thankful to Dr. Eugene Habecker for the faith he had in me as the first female athletics director in TU's history. Through his vision and support, we have accomplished so much that will have a lasting impact on the quality of this institution for years to come."
"Angie Fincannon has been stellar in her role as our athletics director," stated Taylor University President, Dr. Eugene Habecker. "I could not be more pleased with her efforts. Intercollegiate Athletics at Taylor University are alive and well because of her work during her tenure. She has helped ensure that our athletes are students first. The number who have gone on to outstanding academic distinctions after graduation is truly amazing. We wish her the very best in her new assignment."
Prior to assuming the position of athletics director in the 2008-2009 year, Fincannon served in a variety of roles for Taylor University, including time as a tenured faculty member for the kinesiology department, department chair, associate dean and as an assistant to the provost for the Bahamian Initiative.
During her athletics director tenure, Fincannon has actively represented Taylor University by serving on a host of NAIA committees. Most recently, Fincannon was named the Vice President of the NAIA Athletics Directors Association, while also acting as a member of the Board of Directors and serving on the NAIA National Administrative Council during the 2014-2015 year.
Under Fincannon's watch, Taylor has had tremendous competitive and comprehensive success in the Crossroads League standings, as well as in the classroom, while also making major strides in the areas of facilities and staffing within the athletics department.
Fincannon has helped Taylor build on its reputation for academic excellence by overseeing an athletics department that has produced 42 Capital One Academic All-America selections since the start of the 2008-2009 year. During that time, student-athletes at Taylor have posted a collective grade-point average over 3.0 in each year, with all 18 TU teams recording a GPA over the 3.0 mark for the past two years, ranking Taylor among the elite academic institutions in the NAIA.
The Fincannon Era was not limited to outstanding academic success, as the Trojans picked up 14 Crossroads League Championships in seven years and had only one finish outside of the top-three in the Crossroads League All-Sports Standings during that span.
Fincannon's greatest contribution to TU Athletics was the implementation of a strategic plan that led to increased staffing and improved facilities that benefitted all 18 varsity athletics programs for the Trojans. The lengthy list of upgrades include major renovations to Taylor's baseball and softball complexes as well as Odle Arena, a new stadium and practice facility for football and soccer, a brand new cross country course and the launching of Taylor's Trojan Sports Network.
The accomplishments of Fincannon have not gone unnoticed, with a Crossroads League Athletics Director-of-the-Year honor coming in 2010-2011 and a National Association of Collegiate Women Athletics Administrators (NACWAA) NAIA Administrator-of-the-Year nod following in 2012-2013.
Fincannon started her career at Taylor in 1992 as the head volleyball coach and went on to lead the Trojans to 496 victories and only 131 losses on the court. During a 13-year stretch as TU's all-time winningest volleyball coach, Fincannon guided Taylor to seven league championships, four NAIA National Tournaments and a program-record mark of 48-3 on the way to the NAIA Elite Eight in 1997.
Fincannon's impact as a head coach reached far beyond the volleyball court, as she led her teams on two mission trips to Honduras and one to Puerto Rico.
The five-time Crossroads League Coach of the Year was inducted into the Taylor University Athletics Hall of Fame in 2006.
"I know that Taylor Athletics will continue to grow and prosper," concluded Fincannon. "I am so deeply appreciative for the opportunity to lead such a talented and committed group of coaches, staff and student-athletes. My years at Taylor have been life changing and I will sadly miss this amazing campus and community."
Taylor University officials say a decision about an interim athletics director and the launch of a nationwide search to fill the position are forthcoming.