LOUISVILLE – The University of Louisville now has a permanent athletic director.
What You Need To Know
- Heird served as interim AD for past six months
- Replaced Vince Tyra after his departure
- Has history working in U of L athletics
- Spent two years in athletics department at Villanova
Josh Heird, who has served as the Cardinals’ interim athletic director since Dec. 13, 2021, after the departure of Vince Tyra, was hired into the position during a Friday, June 3. His hiring was made official on the school’s website.
Sports Illustrated’s Pat Forde reported Thursday on Twitter that Heird’s hiring was imminent after multiple rounds of interviews the school conducted with sitting athletic directors.
Heird is no stranger to Cardinal athletics. He worked in the U of L athletic department from 2007-2016, serving as the Assistant Athletic Director for Championships and Facilities from 2012-16. He left to be the associate athletic director for internal operations and finance at Villanova University for nearly two years before spending the 2018-19 athletic season as senior associate athletics director and chief athletics operating officer. He returned to U of L to serve as deputy athletic director in 2019.
While serving as interim athletic director at U of L, Heird was involved in the dismissal of former head basketball coach Chris Mack and the hiring of current coach Kenny Payne.
Heird will almost immediately be responsible for defending U of L against NCAA allegations through the Independent Accountability Resolution Process (IARP) later this month. The IARP was created out of proposals from the commission led by former U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice in 2018 to reform college basketball.
Heird’s contract with Uofl runs until June 2027 and includes a base salary of $850,000 plus yearly bonuses and other perks.
Louisville could face possible sanctions resulting from a 2017 federal corruption investigation of college basketball. The NCAA has also accused the school of additional violations committed under Mack during the 2020-21 season.
Before starting a career in collegiate athletics, Heird spent five years in Washington, D.C., working for Rep. Mike Simpson (R-Idaho) and Sen. Wayne Allard (R-Colorado).
He is a 2002 graduate of Mississippi College, where he was a member of the cross-country, track and field, and football teams. In addition to being the American Southwest Conference 800-meter champion in 2001, Heird was an all-conference cross country selection in 2001 and was an academic all-conference honoree every semester of his career. He earned his master’s degree from Louisville in 2009.
Heird is married to the former Abbey Woolley. The couple has two children, Hadley and Gus.