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Indianapolis Colts executive heads IU Simon Cancer Center development board

INDIANAPOLIS -- (March 22, 2012) -- Indianapolis Colts executive Pete Ward has been named chairman of the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center development board, effective immediately.

Ward, chief operating officer of the Indianapolis Colts, heads the 42-person board following the death of Jerry Throgmartin, executive chairman of the board and former chief executive officer of Indianapolis-based HHGregg Inc.

In a letter to his fellow board members, Ward wrote: “Service on the board for the last 12 years has allowed me to learn from the best. I know we all feel privileged to have had Jerry as such a capable mentor and friend over the years. It is truly humbling to be following in his footsteps.”

Throgmartin served as the board’s inaugural chairman before his death in January 2012. During his 15-year tenure, Throgmartin and his fellow board members committed more than $40 million in gifts to the IU Simon Cancer Center.

Now in his 31st season with the Colts, Ward was promoted to chief operating officer in 2010 after serving as senior executive vice president since 2001. He began his affiliation with the Colts in 1981 as a summer and seasonal intern in the team's public relations department.

Following his graduation from the University of Virginia in 1982, Ward was hired as the club's administrative assistant. He was promoted to director of operations shortly after the team's arrival in Indianapolis in March 1984 and was named vice president of administration in 1997. Ward's various duties have included serving as the liaison on the design and construction of Lucas Oil Stadium.

He currently serves on the boards of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra, the Indianapolis Convention & Visitors Association and the Indianapolis Chamber of Commerce. 

Ward and his wife, Lena, have two children, Mady and Sam. Lena is also a member of the development board, raising support for the cancer center’s breast cancer research program.

The IU Simon Cancer Center’s development board is responsible for: 

  • Creating opportunities for new donor interactions
  • Increasing endowments and unrestricted donations
  • Increasing and diversifying board membership
  • Increasing public awareness of the cancer center’s mission and accomplishments

Current board members also include Lance Armstrong, Jim Irsay, and Peggy Throgmartin.