University of Kentucky Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart was one of four recipients of the Under Armour Athletics Director of the Year Award on Wednesday at the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics annual awards luncheon in Orlando, Fla.
Chris Del Conte of TCU, Warde Manuel of Connecticut and Ian McCaw of Baylor also were also honored.
The recognition comes the same year that UK Athletics completed the final goal of Barnhart's ambitious 15 by 15 by 15 Plan.
The Southeastern Conference Tournament championship won by the men's basketball team gave UK its 15th conference or national title since the plan was announced in 2008.
During the 2013-14 school year, UK finished 11th in the association's Directors' Cup standings, meeting Barnhart's aim to make Kentucky a top-15 athletics department nationally.UK also has reached the academic prong of the plan in five consecutive semesters by achieving a department-wide grade-point average of 3.0 or better.
In addition, UK Athletics met the final component by expanding the department's community service in Lexington and beyond.
"Under the steady and successful leadership of Mitch Barnhart, the University of Kentucky athletics program is reaching extraordinary levels of success across its 22 varsity programs," said President Eli Capilouto. "For 13 years, his integrity and talent have empowered our staff, coaches and student-athletes to succeed on the field, in the classroom and across the communities they serve. Having recently reached his ambitious set of goals for the department, Mitch continues to inspire our program to reach even higher, while supporting in creative and impactful ways the academic mission of the University."