CSU Bakersfield President Dr. Horace Mitchell and Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Thomas Wallace appointed Kenneth “Ziggy” Siegfried as Athletics Director for CSUB Athletics on Aug. 20, 2015.
Siegfried had been placed in the interim athletics director role in July of the previous year and led the department to the best year in its Division I history through a commitment to excellence. This commitment has created successes in the areas of academics, competition, and student-athlete well-being.
Academic achievement has soared under Siegfried’s leadership. In 2016, CSUB student-athletes reached their highest ever cumulative GPA of 3.06 in the winter quarter with 168 student-athletes carrying a 3.0 GPA or higher. 70-percent of CSUB teams carry a team GPA of 3.0. Academic Progress Rate (APR) scores have also jumped to an average of 960 for all teams, increasing from 948 in the 2013-14 season.
Competitive success also reached an all-time high in Division I as CSUB volleyball made a thrilling run in the Western Athletic Conference (WAC) tournament, winning the department’s first ever WAC tournament championship. In the spring of 2015, CSUB baseball won the WAC tournament championship as well and participated in the NCAA Los Angeles Regional where they won CSUB's first Division I postseason contest, eliminating Ole Miss 2-1.
In 2016 the Roadrunners added another pair of WAC championships as men's basketball defeated New Mexico State to win the WAC Tournament and appeared in their first NCAA Tournament taking on eventual Final Four participant Oklahoma in Oklahoma City. CSUB softball capped an amazing run as well in 2016 winning the WAC Tournament for their first NCAA Regional appearance.
All sports success has also been improving, CSUB finished 172nd in the Learfield Cup, a national competition among NCAA Division I teams based on performance and winning totals each season. It was the highest finish for CSUB to date at the Division I level.
Siegfried has also placed a focus on student-athlete welfare and life skills. In the fall, Siegfried created a new position and hired the first ever full-time life skills coordinator and established the Runner Ready program. The purpose of this new program is is to prepare student-athletes for success in life during and after college athletics. That initiative was rewarded in the summer of 2015 when CSUB Athletics was rewarded the NCAA Accelerated Academic Support Program grant, a multi-year gift of $870,000, much of which will go towards renovating a 7,000 square-foot academics center.
As athletics director Siegfried oversees all operational aspects of an 18 sport NCAA Division I athletics department with an estimated $10 million annual budget, over eighty coaches and staff, and approximately 325 student-athletes. He is involved in assessment and design of budgets for all athletic programs and departments. He recently signed a multimillion-dollar contract extension with Learfield, the corporate sponsor and broadcast-rights holder for CSUB Athletics.
Prior to being named the Interim Athletics Director, Siegfried served as the Senior Associate AD at CSUB. In his role, he managed the athletics department in the absence of the athletics director, was the sport administrator for multiple sports, led the external relations of the department. and was the chair of multiple head coaching searches.
Fundraising was and continues to be a major strength for Siegfried as Roadrunner Scholarship Fund membership increased by 114% while the total number of donors increased by 65% during his time at CSUB. Roadrunner Scholarship Fund donations also set new records for dollars raised for the fourth straight year to $760,000, bringing the overall athletics giving to $2.3 million in 2015-16.
Siegfried arrived in Bakersfield from the University of Memphis where he worked for eight years. During his time in Memphis, he held various positions including serving on the Senior Staff in the athletics department and also serving on the University fundraising leadership team during a successful $250 million campaign. During his time on the athletics’ senior staff, Siegfried was part of the leadership team that raised $16 million to transform athletics facilities at the U of M. Overall, during his time at the University of Memphis Siegfried successfully solicited four gifts of $1 million or more.
Siegfried attended University of Memphis where he earned a bachelor’s degree in education and sports management. He earned his Master of Science degree in sports administration from Middle Tennessee State University and is nearing the completion of his doctorate with an emphasis on leadership in higher education as well.
A native of Memphis, TN, Siegfried and his wife, Karen, have three children, William, Samuel, and their late sister Delilah.