May 6, 2013

Change in Athletics Department Leadership

Dear Lewis & Clark community members,

I am writing to say farewell and thank you to Clark Yeager, Director of Physical Education and Athletics, for his seven years of devoted service. The College has chosen to head in a different direction and Clark has agreed to leave the College on a mutually agreeable basis.

Under Clark’s leadership, Pioneer athletics has made great strides: facilities improvements, competitive successes, strong academic performances by our student-athletes, and a growing sense of pride in the program. In the 2012-2013 academic year, the women’s cross country and women's basketball teams won Northwest Conference Championships. Our football program has regained solid footing during Clark’s tenure with the 2011 team achieving a winning record for the first time in several years. Equally important, Clark fostered a culture in which student-athletes participated fully in the academic and extra-curricular life of the College and distinguished themselves for their community service.

On behalf of the faculty and staff of the College of Arts and Sciences, I thank Clark Yeager for his service and leadership, and wish him all the best in the next stage of his life and career.

I would also like to announce that during this time of transition Senior Associate Director Mark Pietrok will serve as Acting Director of Physical Education and Athletics. Mark has served the College for 24 years and is a proud Pioneer.

–Anna Gonzalez, dean of students

Clark asked me to share the following message:

Lewis & Clark athletics was facing many challenges when I became athletic director seven years ago. The coaches, staff, and I clearly defined our mission, set specific short-term and long-term goals, and then began the hard work of implementing strategies to bring us the targeted success we envisioned.

I knew from the outset that the hardest nut to crack would be developing a sustainably competitive football program—one that would, ideally, help the rest of the program be successful. All these efforts became the most visible in the fall of 2011, with football’s 7-2 season and second-place finish in the Northwest Conference. Many other Pioneer teams also enjoyed significant improvement in their competitive success, and that has continued this year.

I want to thank those most invested in and responsible for the positive change—Pioneer student-athletes, their dedicated coaches, and a top-notch support staff. These people have worked together as a team to transform challenges into success, leaving us in a strong position, and with the best yet to come. I also thank the many supportive trustees, faculty, staff, students, and alumni who joined with us in accomplishing so much.  

I am proud to have been a part of this success. I thank all of you for your hard work, patience, persistence, and, most of all, for your ongoing belief that we could build Pioneer sports to a place of pride.

All my best to the campus community—in particular, to the coaches, student-athletes, and staff I’ve worked with these past seven years. I miss you already.

Go, Pios.

–Clark Yeager

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