On historic day at Duke, King introduced as athletics director

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Friday, May 21, 2021
Duke introduces Nine King as director of athletics
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Duke introduces Nine King as director of athletics. She is the first Black, female AD at Duke.

DURHAM, N.C. (WTVD) -- The first event inside Cameron Indoor Stadium for media in more than a year was a historic one. Duke University introduced Nina King as the school's first female and Black athletics director.

King took the stage and said she does recognize what that means for people who look similar to her and are from similar backgrounds.

"I am a female Black athletic director," King said. "One of the biggest reasons that I am here today is to be a role model for little girls who look like me and to tell them dream big because your dreams can indeed be achieved. But I'm a boy mom and my message is the same to little boys."

READ MORE: New athletics director is the first Black woman to hold post at Duke

King, 42, a daughter, wife and a mother to two young boys, thanked her family for helping her to achieve this dream. She also thanked outgoing Director of Athletics Kevin White who she has worked at Duke with for the past 13 years. She said the best advice he gave her was to treat people the way you want to be treated.

"You all know Kevin White is the G.O.A.T.," she said. "The godfather of college athletics, and I am honored to become branch No. 30 on his tree. Thirty Kevin White colleagues that have gone on to be athletic directors and commissioners. When Rick and I moved here in September of 2008, Duke and Durham was somewhere that we envisioned we would spend a long time, and I'm happy to say that I am just as excited today as I was on day one."

King said some of the first things she'll focus on are national issues that are going to affect Duke Athletics such as name, image and likeness, and she said the Nina King Era will continue to provide a world-class experience for student-athletes.

"We will build on the incredibly rich traditions and our departmental strengths by being innovative and modern in our approach," she said. "What an opportunity we have and we will seize it at the very best institution in the country and the very best conference in the country."

King will officially take over for White on Sept. 1.