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Dull presides over national organization

August 13, 2006|by BOB PARASILITI

COLLEGE PARK, Md. - Doug Dull doesn't have to carry a credit card to understand membership has privileges.

Dull worked his way up the ladder in his chosen profession - college sports media relations. He has traveled coast to coast to come full circle in a short amount of time.

In his third year as the associate athletic director/media relations at the University of Maryland, Dull admits he is where he is today because of the kindness of others. Now, he's in a position to advance the sports information profession while saying thanks to those who helped him along the way.

Dull, a Smithsburg High School and Maryland graduate, is the new president of College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA) for the final year in a four-year rotation as an officer in the organization. And because of his association with the association, he is now a grateful associate.

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"I don't think I would be sitting in my chair here at Maryland without the national organization," Dull said. "I don't think without the networking and knowledge, I would have made it here."

Even the term as president will be another privilege for Dull since CoSIDA is celebrating its golden anniversary. CoSIDA has 2,000 members from all levels of NCAA and NAIA college sports programs. He begins his year in office just before his impending marriage on Saturday.

"It is very special to me to be a part of the 50th anniversary of a national organization that has done so much for me. It will be additional work, but it will be a labor of love," Dull said. "This is the best way that I can give back to the people who gave so much to me."

After graduating from Maryland and following a stint as sports editor of The Herald-Mail, Dull decided to switch careers and start working in college sports media relations.

He started as the SID at Chico State, an NCAA Division II school in California, in 1989. He turned to CoSIDA for help and guidance.

"I got in the national origination as a volunteer working on a radio/TV committee," Dull said. "I did it to network and meet people, but I wanted to be on a committee. I got to meet some veterans who wanted to help the younger guys in the profession."

From Chico State, Dull took over at University of California-Davis in 1991 and Kansas State in 2000, getting help from CoSIDA every step of the way.

"I got that first job at K-State because of my work on the committees," Dull said. "A lot of the veteran guys passed my name along."

The final step of the journey came in 2003 when Dull came back to Maryland. That's when he received his call to duty.

"I was asked if I would be mind being part of the organization's officer rotation," he said. "I was nominated to be third vice president. A number of the people who helped me in the past spoke on my behalf. They wanted someone to get the job in the Northwest corridor and I was there since I was now at Maryland."

The CoSIDA officer rotation is much like that of the local service organizations. It is a four-year commitment - three as vice president and the fourth at president. During his stint, Dull has been in charge of the organization's achievement awards and the annual workshop's social and program. He will run the workshop next summer in San Diego.

"I was floored to be elected," Dull said. "It is an honor to be on a list with so many of the best SIDs of the past. (Former Maryland SID) Jack Zane is on that list."

In his 17 years in the profession, Dull has seen many changes. College media departments aren't just media guides, game capsules and hometown news anymore. They handle marketing, ticket sales and promotion for the school and the program.

"It's a fascinating time to be a SID," Dull said. "The Internet has changed it so much and added some many more opportunities to promote your programs. Now we can approach organizations and find different ways to apply them to where they will help the school and the athletic program. Many more coaches are more interested in dealing with the media favorably."

But in the middle all of the progress and advancement of his profession, there is one main thing accomplishment Dull wants to accomplish during his term.

"The best way I can pay back to the people who helped me is if I can help a young professional in the business," he said. "That is the biggest thing that I can do."

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