MELBOURNE, FLA.—Florida Institute of Technology Director of Athletic Partnerships and former Holy Trinity Head Football Coach John Thomas is returning to football, but this time he won’t be roaming the sidelines. Thomas has been appointed Director of Football Operations for Florida Tech.
Thomas will oversee all aspects of the university’s newly announced football program including fundraising, hiring and supervision of the coaching staff, facilities and day-to-day operations. He will report directly to T. Dwayne McCay, the university’s Provost and Executive Vice President.
“John’s talents and abilities are a great fit for this new role,” said President Anthony J. Catanese. “We’re glad to have him on board with Panther football.”
“There is much work to be done before our football team takes to the field for its first year of competitive play in 2013,” added McCay. “John’s leadership will be key to ensuring that we complete all of the preliminary work needed to successfully kick off this program.”
“I have the highest regard for this institution and am very excited about the opportunities in front of us,” Thomas said. “We have established a long-term plan that not only brings the excitement and intangibles of college football to our campus but brings economic development to our area. Our total focus right now is to reach out and partner with people and corporations in the community who share our excitement, helping us raise the dollars needed to not only put players on the field, but provide the facilities needed to achieve success.”
Since the Board of Trustees endorsed the football program April 30, fund-raising is the first priority. Plans are now being made to: launch a Founders Club for the first major contributors; plan a fund-raising luncheon later this year; and determine practice and play facilities.
“Our fund-raising levels will include the Founder’s Club for major gifts including those for facilities and field construction, the President’s Club for donors ranging from $10,000 up to $100,000, and the Grid Iron Club for all levels of support ranging from $25 to $9,999,” Thomas said. Benefits and details on how to participate will be released in the coming weeks.
“Every person, every corporation that can help us at any dollar amount is very much needed and very much appreciated. This is an exciting opportunity where Florida Tech, fans, football enthusiasts and corporations can all come together to bring college football to East-central Florida, ” Thomas added.
Most recently, Thomas served as Director of Athletic Partnerships at Florida Tech. For the past two years, he has overseen all fundraising activities and corporate partnerships of the Florida Tech Athletic Program. Under Thomas’ direction, the university achieved record levels of corporate partnership and scholarship giving.
Prior to coming to Florida Tech in 2008, Thomas was the head football coach at Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy where he began that program. During his tenure, he developed the program as well as fundraised for equipment and facilities. Thomas’ program saw immediate success as he led his teams to two district championships and five playoff appearances in the school’s first seven varsity seasons. Thomas was selected four times as the Florida Athletic Coaches Association District Coach of the Year.