Vanderbilt University Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos today named Malcolm Turner, a proven and highly accomplished sports business executive with a passion for the transformative power of education, as the university’s new vice chancellor for athletics and university affairs and athletics director. Turner, a member of the NBA’s senior leadership team and president of the NBA G League, will join the university on Feb. 1, 2019.
“I set out to find a thought leader with the skill set and vision to manage the next stage of transformation for Vanderbilt Athletics, and that’s exactly what we found in Malcolm Turner,” Zeppos said. “Malcolm is a proven executive with deep expertise in multiple business disciplines including management, marketing and development across the sports landscape of teams, leagues, facilities and major events. He also carries a deep and personal commitment to education, evidenced by his own academic achievements and his extensive community service. His exceptional skills, combined with his passion for education and drive for excellence, will bring immense value not only to the Vanderbilt Commodores, but to the rest of the university and to the entire Nashville community.”
Vanderbilt interviewed a number of highly accomplished candidates and ultimately decided Turner was the right fit to carry on Vanderbilt’s athletics program.
“The level of interest in this role from a superb and diverse set of candidates was nothing short of remarkable,” noted Zeppos. “This was a testament to what I believe is an inspiring and distinctive approach to the student athlete experience that I call ‘the Vanderbilt Way’ – a deep commitment to the comprehensive development of student athletes to excel on the field of play, academically and in life.”
Zeppos said Turner is the right leader to take the university’s commitment to student-athletes to the next level and achieve success on and off the field. “Malcolm is a problem solver with a unique ability to bring people together around a common vision,” he added. “I am confident that he will have an immediate and profound impact on the Commodores’ success as an elite athletics program by building new relationships and new sources of revenue, while recruiting and retaining extraordinarily talented coaches, students and staff.”
“I am honored to join such a storied university with a historic commitment to excellence in everything it does,” Turner said. “Vanderbilt University and the city of Nashville are on the move, and I’m excited to be a part of that transformation and help position the Commodores and Vanderbilt’s unique approach to developing student-athletes as a national and international model. I look forward to supporting and partnering with our student-athletes, coaches, facility managers, staff and the entire Commodores community to help attain and provide the resources for our teams to succeed.”
Turner graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and went on to earn joint J.D./.M.B.A. degrees from Harvard University.
Turner is also an accomplished community leader, having served on the advisory boards for Teach for America, the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, the UNC Board of Visitors and the board of the Morehead-Cain Scholarship Fund.
As a student at UNC Chapel Hill, Turner was a Rhodes Scholar Finalist, Morehead-Cain Scholar and recipient of the Ernest L. Mackie Chancellor’s Award for character, scholarship and leadership.
Turner’s tenure as president of the NBA G League is hallmarked by growth, expansion and transformation.
Under Turner’s leadership, the NBA G League has enjoyed unprecedented growth across all areas of its business and basketball operations — from record numbers of NBA G League alumni in the NBA, to a first-of-its-kind expanded entitlement partnership with Gatorade, to innovative new player contract types. A champion for NBA Two-Way Contracts (newly incorporated in the NBA’s current Collective Bargaining Agreement) and NBA G League Select Contracts (newly announced as part of the G League’s recently launched professional path), Turner’s vision deepened the league’s commitment to player development.
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