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William Walker Director of Athletics and Recreation

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Dr. William (Billy) Walker joined American University in 2013 as Director of Athletics and Recreation. Under his leadership, American University teams have had an impressive winning percentage, and since his arrival, every semester student athletes have earned above a 3.34 GPA.

Prior to AU, Walker served as deputy director of athletics and professor and head of the Physical Education Department at the Air Force Academy. In 2001, Walker was appointed by President Bush as the first Permanent Professor of Athletics and Physical Education. In addition to his duties at the Academy, Walker was the Director of the Air Force Combatives Center of Excellence, responsible for developing and implementing hand-to-hand combat training to thousands of airmen deployed around the world.

In July of 2013, Walker was promoted to the rank of Brigadier General during his retirement ceremony from the United States Air Force. A command pilot with nearly 3,000 hours of helicopter flight time, General Walker’s professional responsibilities have included deputy command of the 89th Operations Group, an organization of 800 people responsible for directing the safe transport of the President of the United States, Vice President, Cabinet Secretaries, members of Congress, foreign heads of state, and other dignitaries around the world.

A recognized expert in intercollegiate athletic issues, Walker has been a member of the NCAA Division I Council since 2020, recently served his second term as chair of the NCAA Division I Wrestling Committee, and was a member of the NCAA Division I Men's Ice Hockey Committee from 2011-13.

Originally from Hartland, Wisconsin, Walker graduated from the United States Air Force Academy in 1983 with a bachelor of science in history. Walker is married to the former Caroline Cyr of Daleville, Alabama, and they have one daughter, Kaela, who is a 2015 graduate of Northwestern University.