Terry Holland, Respected Leader At The University Of Virginia And National Figure In Intercollegiate Athletics, Steps Down
July 15, 2004
CHARLOTTESVILLE – M. Terry Holland, a nationally respected leader in college athletics for three decades who led the University of Virginia Department of Athletics through a period of major growth, will step down as special assistant to University President John T. Casteen III, Casteen announced today. The move will be effective at the end of August.
“Terry’s decision rightly draws attention to his long and devoted service to the University of Virginia, and to intercollegiate athletics nationwide,” Casteen said. “His reputation for integrity in sports programs speaks for itself. Our former athletes, our coaches, and many thousands of U.Va. fans know the value of his professional competence, his personal warmth, and his lifelong quest for excellence.
“We wish for him and for Ann only the best of experiences in the future. I personally look forward to continuing, in yet another context, a friendship I have treasured for almost 30 years.”
Holland first came to U.Va. on April 1, 1974 as head men’s basketball coach and over the next 16 seasons became the most successful coach in Cavalier history, with a record of 326-173. In 1990, he returned to his alma mater, Davidson College, to become its athletic director, but five years later he was back in Charlottesville to take on the athletic director duties at U.Va.
During Holland’s tenure as athletic director, the University quickly moved to improve its facilities. With the help of generous alumni, Holland initiatives included: the $86 million expansion of Scott Stadium and creation of the Carl Smith Center; construction of the Aquaticsand Fitness Center, home to Virginia’s swimming and diving teams and one of the nation’s top collegiate recreation facilities; expansion and naming of the Sheridan Snyder Tennis Center; the University Hall Turf Field; and The Park, home to the Cavalier softball team.
In 1998-99, U.Va. achieved its highest-ever finish in the Sear’s Directors Cup, an all-sports competition among NCAA Division I universities based on their performance in NCAA championships, taking eighth nationally. In 1999, the Charlotte Observer named Holland one of the 50 most influential figures in ACC basketball history.
Holland gave up the directorship in June 2001 to become special assistant to the president so he could focus his attention on one of his long-term goals — the creation of a new basketball arena. In this new position, Holland was dedicated to raising funds for the John Paul Jones Arena, currently under construction across from University Hall — Holland’s base for most of his tenure in Charlottesville. The University officially broke ground for the new facility in 2003, and it is scheduled to open in 2006.
“The University of Virginia athletic program is in great hands under the leadership of Craig Littlepage and the arena project is already a reality to those who drive by it daily, as I do,” Holland said. “This makes it a good time for me to look for challenging opportunities either inside or outside intercollegiate athletics before I hang up the sneakers for good.
“Charlottesville and the University of Virginia will always be home for me and my family. There is no way to properly express our appreciation for the personal and professional support we have received from this community. We would like to say a big thank you for those many people who have made U.Va. athletics a positive model for intercollegiate athletics.”
Holland hired Littlepage as an assistant basketball coach in 1976, and Littlepage later succeeded him as athletic director, a post he still holds. The two are long-time colleagues, but more important, Littlepage said, they are the greatest of friends.
“Terry has been more than mentor to me. Without a doubt, I owe much to Terry and his family. I came to U.Va. due to his decision to offer me a position on his coaching staff. I returned in 1988 as a result of our relationship,” Littlepage said. “Terry has influenced each subsequent step of my professional life.”
Littlepage believes Holland’s high standards and strong commitment to intercollegiate athletics help set the stage for the future strength and reputation of University of Virginia athletics programs. “The success of his teams in the late 1970’s and early 1980’s raised the bar and encouraged coaches and student-athletes at U.Va. to compete with the best programs in the country. He was a leader here in Charlottesville and a leader on the national scene. His vision and commitment made us all better.”
Holland has remained active in basketball circles. He was a member of the powerful NCAA Basketball Committee, chairing the panel in 1997. He served on the Senior National Team Committee of USA Basketball from 1992 through 1996, and currently chairs the organization’s Collegiate Committee, which he has served on since 1996.