Brandon Out; U-M Names Interim Athletic Director


ANN ARBOR — University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel  has appointed James Hackett, the recently retired chief executive officer of Michigan-based Steelcase Inc., as interim athletic director for the university.

The announcement was made Friday during a press conference where Schlissel said David Brandon, the university’s athletic director since 2010, had submitted his resignation.

“Jim Hackett is a highly experienced and respected business leader, a man of integrity and a devoted member of our Michigan community,” Schlissel said in making the announcement. “I am confident Jim will immediately begin the process of moving the department forward, including working closely with me to develop a plan to identify and recruit Michigan’s next permanent athletic director.”

Hackett will serve as interim leader of the university’s Athletic Department while a search for an AD is launched. His appointment is pending approval in November by the university’s Board of Regents. He said he would not be a candidate for the permanent position.

Hackett is a 1977 graduate of U-M, where he played center on the football team. He is a member of the board of advisers for U-M’s Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy and the Life Sciences Institute. Hackett retired in February after 20 years leading Steelcase, the Grand Rapids-based global leader in the office furniture industry. His career with Steelcase spanned more than 30 years.