BILLINGS – Rocky Mountain College Director of Athletics, Bruce Parker, is stepping down from that position after three-and-a-half years at the college. After nearly 40 years in collegiate athletics, Parker will transition to a consultant role with Rocky for the next two years. Parker took over as the College’s athletic director in July of 2014.
“It’s been an honor to serve as Rocky Mountain College’s athletic director for the past three-and-a-half years,” Parker said. “It was an opportunity to return to my hometown, and serve a great institution. I’m proud of the accomplishments we have achieved at Rocky.”
“Challenging health issues make it difficult to continue on a full-time basis, but I look forward to continuing to help Rocky Mountain College on a part-time basis moving forward,” Parker added about the decision.
During his tenure at Rocky, the Battlin’ Bears athletic department made great strides. He was instrumental in the renovation of Herb Klindt Field in 2016, made tremendous progress in the corporate partnership program, solidified and directed a talented coaching staff, and helped secure the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Division I Women’s Basketball Tournament in Billings from 2017-2019.
“The athletic department saw unprecedented growth during Bruce’s tenure. We will be hard-pressed to find someone of Bruce Parker’s caliber to take over as athletic director,” said Brad Nason, Rocky’s executive vice president and dean for student life.
“We are fortunate that Bruce will remain connected to the program as a consultant, and we will continue to take advantage of his knowledge and expertise,” Nason added about Rocky’s future.
Parker is a member of NAIA Athletic Director’s Association (ADA) Board of Directors and previously served as the organization’s president. He served on the NAIA’s National Administrative Council for fifteen years, keeping RMC in the forefront of NAIA athletics.
Parker was honored as one of the NACDA/Under Armour Athletic Directors of the Year in 2009 and 2011. He has been named the Frontier Conference Athletic Director of the Year eight times in 15 years, along with twice being recognized as the NAIA Region I Athletic Director of the Year.
NAIA CEO and President Jim Carr named Parker to the NAIA National Strategic Planning Council, as well as to the NAIA National Marketing Committee. He also served as a member of the National Association of Collegiate Athletic Directors (NACDA) National Executive Committee for five years.
Parker came to Rocky Mountain College after serving as the director of athletics at Carroll College in Helena. His accomplishments there include record attendance at home athletic events, hosting numerous NAIA National Football playoff games, record-setting years with corporate fundraising, and funds generated by the Saints’ Athletic Association. Parker exceeded the college’s expectations for fundraising by the athletic department and made strides toward initiating enhancements to athletic facilities and added eight athletic teams. Prior to his stint at Carroll, Parker was the associate athletic director and sports information director at Montana State University in Bozeman over a 22-year tenure at the NCAA Institution.
Parker is a 1979 graduate of Eastern Montana College (now MSU Billings) with a bachelor of science degree in business management and marketing. Parker and his wife Lisa, state director of Business Professionals of America, have two sons, Ryan (Midori) of Chandler, Ariz., and granddaughter, Sophia; and Brett, the men’s head soccer coach at Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas.
A national search for the next athletic director at Rocky Mountain College will begin this summer. Associate Director of Athletics Jeff Malby will take over the day-to-day operations of the Rocky athletic department on an interim basis.