|Born:||October 15, 1968|
New Bern, North Carolina
|* Offseason and/or practice squad member only|
|Career highlights and awards|
|Career NFL statistics|
|Player stats at NFL.com|
George Koonce (born October 15, 1968) is an American athlete and athletic director. A former linebacker in the National Football League (NFL), he served as the athletic director at the University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee between 2009 and 2010.
Koonce was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Atlanta Falcons out of the East Carolina University, but was waived during the preseason.
Koonce started at linebacker for the World League's Ohio Glory in 1992.
He was then signed by the Green Bay Packers before the 1992 season. He played for the Packers from 1992–1999. He was an eight-year starter as the Packers returned to dominance, starting 102 of 112 games. He played all three linebacker positions with the Packers and was with the team when they won Super Bowl XXXI.
He was signed by the Seattle Seahawks as an unrestricted free agent before the 2000 season, and started all 16 games. After the 2000 season he retired with 720 tackles, 9 sacks, and 5 interceptions in 128 games (118 starts).
He was inducted into the National Junior College Hall of Fame in 2000 and also the hall of fame at East Carolina University. In 1999, he founded the George Koonce Sr. Foundation to provide underprivileged children with educational, athletic, artistic and social opportunities which assist their development. Koonce's post-career ambitions have been centered around the world of academics. Earning his Master's in Sports Management from East Carolina University and Ph.D. from Marquette University (one of only two players in Packers 100-year history to earn a PhD), Koonce has affectionately become known as “The Doctor of Defense.” He is a member of the NFL Player Engagement Advisory Board and has co-authored a book entitled Is There Life After Football? – Surviving the NFL. Currently, he serves as Senior Vice President of the Office of University Relations at Marian University in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin where he provides leadership and strategic direction while being responsible for growing awareness and increasing philanthropic support for the university through community and alumni engagement. Koonce also serves as an on-air personality at Green Bay's CBS affiliate for “Backstage with George Koonce,” and “Locker Room".
He spent of two years as an Assistant Athletic Director for Development, assisting with fundraising and marketing of the department. He also earned his master's degree in Sport Management in 2006 from ECU.
He served in the Packers front office as the Director of Player Development for the Green Bay Packers for the 2006 season. Koonce currently serves on the Packers Board of Directors.
He served as the Senior Associate Director of Athletics at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He was responsible for fundraising, major gifts, community relations, and student welfare. He joined the Golden Eagles in 2007. He also pursued his Ph.D. in Sport Administration while at Marquette.
He was introduced as the new University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Director of Athletics on March 17, 2009, and began his duties on April 1. He was placed on administrative leave in April 2010, and his resignation was announced on June 2, 2010. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported, "Koonce's resignation was related to the death of Koonce's wife, Tunisia, who died of cancer last October" and that "the death of Koonce's wife put (him) in the position of being the principal caretaker for his two children, ages 3 and 12."
In 2014, Koonce was hired as the Vice-President of Advancement at Marian University in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. The university described his job duties as "growing awareness and increasing philanthropic support" within the region.