SYCAMORE TOWNSHIP, Ohio — Moeller High School named Justin Bayer as the school's new athletic director Monday morning.
Bayer, a 1997 Moeller High School graduate, has a successful business, fundraising and education background, according to the school.
Bayer, who begins his athletic director duties July 1, ran cross country and track at Moeller. He directed the school's campus ministry and retreats after graduating from college.
"The minute I saw the job description, I couldn’t think of another opportunity that match my professional experiences, natural aptitudes and passions," Bayer said in a statement.
"I’m honored to work alongside a committed administration team who is focused on making Moeller the best high school in the country, humbled to be the next leader of a proud legacy of impacting the lives of past, current and future 'Men of Moeller,' and incredibly excited to continue to build a championship culture."
Bayer does not arrive from an athletic background, and that's just what the school wanted.
Moeller modeled their approach on one used by universities and colleges. School administrators consulted with the athletic directors at the University of Cincinnati, University of Dayton, University of Louisville, Indiana University and others who work in higher education athletic departments.
At many schools, the athletic directors have law and business backgrounds.
"We are shifting the model from the traditional AD who was focused on scheduling games, attending all games, setting up for games and more, and focusing on building a first-class culture, enhancing the fan experience and advancing the school’s mission," Moeller president Marshall Hyzdu said in a statement.
After earning a business management bachelor's degree from the University of Dayton and a master's degree in higher education administration from the University of Vermont, Bayer returned to Moeller as director of campus ministry and retreats after graduating from UD.
He then went on to work at both of his alma maters, serving as assistant director of admissions at the University of Vermont and director of development at University of Dayton, where he raised more than $2 million.
Bayer then became a start-up entrepreneur, launching Welcome to College in 2010 in Dayton then relocated to New Orleans in 2015.
Welcome to College offers a software platform and consulting services to help higher education institutions optimize the campus visit experience.
Bayer will remain on the Welcome to College board of directors, but he will hand over day-to-day management of the company to his brother, Kevin Bayer, a 1999 Moeller graduate.
"When you consider what we were looking for in an AD, Justin is the guy," Hyzdu said. "He's never been a head coach, but that's the old model. The new model is bringing in experienced business people and lawyers to run the athletic department, and that is the approach we are taking."
Bayer said his goals as AD include striving for academic excellence for all student athletes, developing a championship culture within each athletic program, providing dynamic athletic experiences for all stakeholders and creating an annual athletic giving club.
Bayer said he is looking forward to returning to Moeller and Cincinnati with his wife, Megan, and their three children - Rosie, 16, Julia, 13, and Joey, 10.
"The Moeller family is real, and it is special," Bayer said. "The Marianist values of faith, community and service combined with the people who embody these values and live those out a daily basis create an incredible educational environment. If you want to attend a high school where you feel fully alive every day, then attend Moeller High School."
Moeller announced its search for a new athletic director this past winter.
The school said Feb. 4 that Mike Asbeck, who had been the athletic director since 2013, was no longer employed at the school.
Hyzdu became the interim athletic director in February.