Rick, an alumnus of the Flying Dutchman football team and an LVC Athletic Hall of Fame inductee, began his coaching career after graduating from The Valley and remained a member of the team’s coaching staff for 15 years. He was the assistant athletic director for six years before taking the helm as director of athletics in 2007. Rick transitioned to a senior major gifts officer role at the College in the summer of 2023.
During his tenure, Rick was instrumental in the overall expansion of athletics with the addition of several new sports and the growth of LVC’s existing athletic programs. The Flying Dutchmen enjoyed an era of success under Rick’s leadership, winning more than 20 conference championships with more than 25 NCAA tournament team appearances.
Rick and his wife, Lisa Henry Beard ’93, P’24, spend so much time on campus that it feels as though his family has grown up here. The relationships that were created when he was a student, coach, and athletic director are the most important part of the LVC experience. He believes these keep alumni coming back either to visit, work, or enroll their children. During his 30 years at LVC, Rick’s favorite thing is seeing alumni return year after year for sporting events and tailgating. He has the unique opportunity to watch them grow beyond their time on campus, from young professionals to parents and parents of students.
He is proud of his management team. With a true willingness to pitch in, they care about each other and sincerely want to see every team succeed. When he sees a team in the stands cheering on another, he knows his coaching staff is doing it right. He says, “Coaches may only be in a student’s life for four years but can impact the next 60.” He believes that a good coach can help a student become a better member of society and a better person.
Rick likes to spend time on his boat because it brings together many of his favorite things, the ocean, fishing, and his family. During warmer weather, he also likes to relax poolside with his wife and kids or get in a round of golf.