Daily Independent (Ashland, KY)

Local News

January 3, 2013

MSU to name new facility to honor Macks

MOREHEAD — Morehead State University will host a dedication ceremony for the Bill and Regina Mack Student-Athlete Technology and Learning Lab on Saturday from 4:30 to 5 p.m. at the EAGLE Center across from Jayne Stadium.

During its December quarterly meeting, MSU’s Board of Regents approved naming the facility after the Macks.

“They (Bill and Regina Mack) have been generous supporters of the University for many years, beginning with the establishment of an endowed football scholarship and later contributions to the Fund for Excellence and athletic facilities. To honor their dedication, devotion and contributions to MSU, a room in the newly renovated EAGLE Center will be named the Bill and Regina Mack Student-Athlete Technology and Learning Lab,” the Board’s recommendation noted.

William James Mack of New Britain, Conn., first came to Morehead State College in September 1939 on a football scholarship. While in school, he earned letters in swimming and football.

In 1940, he met Morehead native Regina Sturgill; they were married in June 1942. He entered the U.S. Navy that same year where he spent four years and held the rank of Chief Specialist A. Upon his discharge, he returned to the campus and completed his degree in physical education in 1947. He then enrolled in the University of Kentucky to work on his master’s degree.

As a UK student, he received a fellowship in the physical education department and was a member of the UK Trouper Gymnastics Team. In his competitive years, he was an accomplished diver.

After college, Mack accepted a job at Frankfort City Schools as a physical education teacher and assistant football coach. The next year, he took a similar job at Pikeville City Schools. In June 1957, he returned to Morehead State University as director of the Student Union, now Adron Doran University Center, where he served for 13 years. His wife directed dining services for some time, and then served as a campus volunteer.

From 1958-60, he held three positions: director of the Student Union, assistant football coach and full-time teacher in the Department of Physical Education. In 1960, he was assigned to a one-year appointment as coach of the wrestling team.

Mack became the school’s swim coach in 1962, the first and only person to hold that title. He held that position for 14 years until the University dropped the sport in 1976.

In May 1988, the MSU Board of Regents honored the former coach by designating the Coach Bill Mack Diving Well of the Russell McClure Pool in the Academic-Athletic Center. Then-President C. Nelson Grote said that Mack had played a major role in designing the pool and that “he brought distinction to the University’s sports program.”

“It was appropriate to honor them for the courageous and deep devotion which Bill and Jean Mack have for each other and for this University family,” Dr. Grote said.

With 37 years of teaching in Kentucky, Mack retired from MSU in May 1979 after 23 years at the University. He died in 1991 at the age of 77.

Retirement allowed the Macks more time to devote to MSU. The William J. Mack Athletic Scholarship was funded through the MSU Foundation. They gave a lifetime of support to the University and maintained a strong interest after retirement, as long as his health would allow.

For additional information on the event, contact MSU’s Division of University Advancement at 1-877-690-4483 or email giving@moreheadstate.edu.

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