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Securing America’s Future:

The Power of Liberal Arts Education

Chad Buchanan

Assistant General Manager, Charlotte Hornets
Simpson College (IA), Class of 1995
Chad Buchanan recently became the assistant general manager for the Charlotte Hornets. Before that he served as a scout, director of college scouting, and acting general manager for the Portland Trail Blazers. Buchanan began his career as an assistant coach of Simpson College’s basketball team, where he worked for five years. He also has worked as an assistant coach for both the Kansas City Knights, a team in the American Basketball Association, and for Drake University in Iowa.

Buchanan is a native of West Des Moines, Iowa and attended Simpson College, where he lettered in both basketball and baseball. He went on to receive his master's degree in athletic administration from the University of Iowa and served as a graduate assistant for the men's basketball program. Chad and his wife Melanie have two children, Treyson and Addilane.
As I reflect on how a NCAA Division III student-athlete ended up in the front office of an NBA team, it becomes clear that my experiences attending a small college helped shape a dream into a reality. The ability to connect and communicate with people of diverse backgrounds is critical to succeeding in professional basketball. The professors, coaches, and staff at Simpson College helped mold these skills that I continue to use on a daily basis. The opportunities afforded to students at a small college help build interpersonal skills, confidence, and a network of valuable contacts.
 

The ability to connect and communicate with people of diverse backgrounds is critical to succeeding in professional basketball. The professors, coaches, and staff at Simpson College helped mold these skills that I continue to use on a daily basis.

 
Building a championship team is the ultimate goal of every professional sports organization and that requires not only talent but more importantly, chemistry and an unselfish, team-first attitude. These traits were instilled in me during my career at Simpson, where student-athletes play for the sheer love of the game and for each other. The same team-first mentality preached at Simpson is also a proven formula for success at the professional sports level. I learned the importance of putting the team ahead of myself, and this personality trait has helped me gain the trust and confidence of my colleagues today.
 
I would not trade my experience at Simpson for anything. The small class size, intimate setting and caring people on campus helped mold me into someone who is living a childhood dream of working in the NBA.
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