SFA names new director of SFA campus recreation

LUFKIN, TX (Press release) - A Texas native has returned to his home state from California to serve as the new director of campus recreation at Stephen F. Austin State University.

Ken Morton received both his bachelor's and master's degrees from Hardin-Simmons University in Abilene. He comes to SFA after nearly 10 years at California State University, Sacramento, where he served as the coordinator of recreational sports from 2001 to 2009. Most recently, he was associate director of the university's 150,000-square-foot recreation and wellness center.

"I started working in the recreation field as a freshman in high school," Morton said. "This is what I do; it's in my blood, and I love the career path I have taken."

Morton began his career with a six-year stint on the recreation center staff at his church and for eight years was director of student activities and campus recreation at McMurry University in Abilene. With more than three decades of experience, including teaching positions at both of his prior educational institutions, Morton has seen the business from every possible angle, working with camps, churches, city parks and recreation departments, YMCA groups, and military recreation units.

"One of my biggest influences has been my students who have worked for me," he said. "They have some great ideas, and with a little support and guidance, they have done some fantastic things."

Steve Westbrook, vice president for university affairs, said SFA representatives were impressed by the commitment to students that Morton has demonstrated during his career.

"His commitment to collaborate with departments across campus on behalf of students will continue to enhance the ability of our campus recreation program to be a positive influence in the development of our students," Westbrook said. "We are excited to have this Texan back in Texas."

Morton said he is most looking forward to the same thing that most students anticipate in their campus recreation program — fun.

"I still love to play and have fun, and I definitely have a lot to learn still," he said. "I am a responsible adult, but I believe most recreation professionals are still kids at heart in many ways. We love helping others have a great time and enjoy life. That's why we work in recreation."