Fred Albrecht, who worked under seven UNLV presidents during a celebrated 38-year career as a coach, teacher, and administrator, passed away Friday after a long battle with cancer.
Albrecht arrived at UNLV as assistant basketball coach in 1970 and retired in 2007 as vice president for university and community relations. Along the way, he served as director of alumni relations, interim athletic director (twice), executive director of athletics fundraising and also became the winningest coach in UNLV tennis history. In recognition of his career achievements on Maryland Parkway, Albrecht was awarded the UNLV President's Medal and was inducted into the UNLV Athletics Hall of Fame in 2012.
“Fred had a tremendous impact on UNLV and will be remembered as one of our greatest ambassadors,” said UNLV President Len Jessup. “From the day he stepped on campus in 1970 until his passing, Fred’s passion for UNLV was unrivaled. He was UNLV’s renaissance man, stepping up when the university needed him in a variety of roles. Our condolences are with Fred's family. He will be truly missed.”
Albrecht is credited with creating the university's first alumni relations program and shepherded the fundraising and construction of Tam Alumni Center, the current home of the UNLV Alumni Association. A native of Youngstown, Ohio, Albrecht earned a master’s degree in education from UNLV during his time on campus.
He continued to serve UNLV after retirement, accepting appointments to committees and spreading the word about the university's achievements and advocating for its initiatives, including the Jerry Tarkanian Legacy Project.
In a 2004 interview, Albrecht remembered his early days at UNLV with particular fondness. "Those years were something like being a settler on the frontier. There were lots of unknowns, but the challenges were accepted by everybody." He also noted the construction of Rebel Park at the football stadium and the building of the Alumni Amphitheater near the Student Union being a proud moment.
"Fred was an icon on this campus and to all who knew and loved him," said UNLV Director of Athletics Tina Kunzer-Murphy. "Our thoughts and prayers go out to Fred's wife, Connie, his daughter, Michelle, and the entire family. Fred was a get-it done guy who did so much for this department and entire University. He was a true and dedicated Rebel and we will miss him dearly."
In addition to the Feb. 13 celebration of life service on campus, his contributions contributions to UNLV and its athletics programs will be marked during a moment of silence at the Feb. 10 Runnin’ Rebels basketball game and on the marquee in front of the Thomas & Mack Center.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Fred C. Albrecht Scholarship Fund at UNLV.