Dannen enters his fifth year as Director of Athletics at his alma mater, the
University of Northern Iowa, one word can describe what has happened over the
past four seasons - SUCCESS. Under
Dannen's leadership, the Panthers have enjoyed success on the field, in the
classroom and in the fundraising, marketing and fiscal environments.
last four seasons, UNI's competitive success is unmatched at the FCS level.
The Panthers have a combined 11 NCAA appearances in football, volleyball,
men's basketball and women's basketball in that time frame, more than any other
FCS institution. UNI is the only FCS institution to qualify for the NCAA
tournament in each of those four sports at least once in the past four years.
The overall athletics program at UNI has also flourished with a top-half finish
in the Missouri Valley Conference's All-Sports standings in each of Dannen's
four years. In fact, UNI has secured six straight upper-division finishes in
the all-sports standings altogether.
UNI captured regular season Missouri Valley Conference titles in volleyball and softball in 2011-12 to go along with a Missouri Valley Football Conference crown as well.
The Panthers' academic success is demonstrated by a 3.09 overall
department grade point average in 2011-12. Dannen was responsible for upgrading athletics' academic
advising position by tripling the full-time equivalent positions in the
department. Athletics six-year graduation rate is over 70 percent (73 percent) and
has exceeded the institutional graduation rate each of the past three years.
has also overseen great strides in the marketing of Panther athletics. In the
three years as Director of Athletics, men's basketball, volleyball and football
have all set venue attendance records. Volleyball continues to rank in the
top-15 nationally in attendance. With the recent signing of Learfield Sports,
UNI's television presence has doubled the number of locally televised games and
expanded the audience beyond cable to over-the-air broadcasts as well. The
Learfield annual marketing and media rights agreement doubled the revenue
coming into the program just four years ago. Dannen also negotiated and signed
a multi-year deal with Nike for apparel and equipment.
generated 51 percent of the department's $11.6 million budget in 2009-10, which
was the first time the department had ever generated more than half of its
annual budget. Dannen has reduced the amount of general fund money in the
athletics budget by 24 percent since July 1, 2008. UNI has also doubled its
football game-day revenue since 2008.
has been instrumental in the launch of Vesting in the Panthers (VIP) fundraising
effort, part of the university's Imagine the Impact campaign. The three
components to Vesting in the Panthers (Vision, Infrastructure and Pride) will
ensure lasting resources to enhance current programs, facilities and
scholarships. The success of this program has been shown as the fund-raising
target has been exceeded with two years left in the campaign. UNI's original goal
of $15 million has generated over $22 million in gifts, and a new target of $30
million by June of 2013 has been set. As a part of this campaign, Dannen helped
secure the largest single unrestricted cash gift for intercollegiate athletics
- $2 million. The Panther Scholarship Club, buoyed by the Rally in the Valley,
a fundraising dinner/auction created in 2009, has seen double-digit growth in
each of the past three years. Including a 15 percent increase in membership
during the 2010-11 year.
have been significant improvements in UNI's facilities in recent years as well.
During Dannen's tenure, UNI has completed a new strength and conditioning
center, new administrative offices and a new student-athlete academic center in
the UNI-Dome. He has also overseen the development of suites in both the
UNI-Dome and McLeod Center as well as the installation of new turf in the
UNI-Dome. The completion of the north UNI-Dome concourse was also successfully
completed to enhance the fan experience in the Dome.
became the school's fifth director of athletics since UNI turned Division I. When
he rejoined the Panther family in 2009, it was a homecoming for Dannen, who
attended UNI as an undergraduate in the 1980s. He maintained close ties to the
school during his nearly 20 years away from the University, and his passion and
drive for the Purple and Gold was a key reason he chose to come back and guide
six years prior to coming back to UNI, Dannen served as Executive Director of
the Iowa Girls' High School Athletic Union (IGHSAU). As the governing body for
high school sports in the state of Iowa, the IGHSAU oversees nearly 400 schools
and more than 70,000 students, in the 11 sports offered by the Union. Dannen had
served in various capacities at the IGHSAU over 18 years, including nine years
(1993-2002) as associate executive director.
oversaw a 40 percent growth in the Union's budget on his watch, all the while
operating the IGHSAU with a financial surplus each year, which allowed for the
establishment of a significant reserve fund. Sponsorship agreements soared to
new heights during his tenure as executive director, as Dannen spearheaded
expanding the Union's existing deals and developing landmark new corporate
sponsors. He also developed a statewide multi-media rights agreement for the
IGHSAU, and created numerous scholarship programs for high school
student-athletes who excel in the classroom.
active in the community. He is currently a member of the Iowa Games Board of
Directors, and the Cedar Falls Tourism and Visitors Bureau. He has also served
on the Greater Des Moines Sports Commission and the AAU Junior Olympics Local
Organizing Committee, the Iowa Athletic Council, Iowa Referee Committee and the
Drake Relays Committee. Dannen has also been active internationally, having
twice been a presenter in Malaysia - at the request of the Olympic Council of
Malaysia - on the topic of youth sports and sport program development. He was
named to the "40 under 40" business leaders in Des Moines in 2003 and was named
4th among the most powerful Iowans in sports by the Des Moines
Register in 2005.
The NCAA Administrative Cabinet has appointed University of Northern
Iowa Director of Athletics Troy Dannen to the NCAA Division I Football
Championship Committee. His four-year term will begin Sept. 1, 2013 and
Sept. 1, 2017.
During the NCAA FCS season, the NCAA Division I Football
Championship Committee is charged with evaluating programs,
participating in numerous regional and national conference calls,
assisting other committee members with the selection of teams to the
playoffs and the creation of the annual NCAA FCS Playoff bracket.
Dannen served on the NCAA FCS Regional Advisory Committee in 2011 and 2012. As a member of the
committee, he will discuss the FCS playoff field and assist the championship
committee with the at-large selections.
raised on a farm near Marshalltown, Iowa, Dannen, 45, received his bachelor's
degree in public relations with a minor in journalism from UNI in 1989.
married to his wife, Amy, who works for Boston Scientific Corporation, and has
two daughters, Emily and Holly.