Jack Stark, who spent about 15 years as the Husker football team’s psychologist, announced Wednesday that he will pursue a seat on the University of Nebraska Board of Regents.
Stark, 73, will seek the District 2 seat, which is being vacated by Omaha businessman Howard Hawks after 18 years on the board.
District 2 includes most of Sarpy County and a portion of Douglas County.
Mike Kennedy, an attorney and member of the Millard School Board, already has announced that he’s in the running for the District 2 seat. Kennedy has sent out press releases about his endorsements, including from former Gov. Dave Heineman, some Omaha City Council members, some state senators and others.
Kennedy, 49, said he has built up relationships over more than two decades. He served on the Metro Community College board before getting elected to the Millard School Board in 2003.
The eight-person Board of Regents oversees the NU system, including institutions in Omaha, Lincoln, Kearney and Curtis.
Stark said in an interview Wednesday that he just wants to contribute. “I’m not a politician,” he said. “My motivation is simple — passion for the university.”
Stark said that he sees growing mental health problems among students as an issue that must be addressed. He also mentioned the NU system’s role in the state’s economic growth.
He has worked with many businesses and sports teams, including Creighton men’s basketball and University of Nebraska at Omaha hockey. He said he assists with corporate culture and helps athletes with personal problems and athletic performance.
His press release says he served as team psychologist for the Huskers from 1989 to 2003. He described sports psychology, leadership training and mental illness as his areas of focus as a clinical psychologist.
The regents officially serve as nonpartisan representatives. Both Kennedy and Stark are Republicans.
Stark said he will have “numerous announcements” about endorsements in the future.
“And I expect to win.”