Indiana Pacers GM Lauds Influence of Simpson in His Career
One of the first things Chad Buchanan '95 did after being named general manager of the Indiana Pacers was to thank Simpson College.
"I think the one thing Simpson helped prepare me for is, you can't sit in a classroom and hide," he said. "You have to interact with people and learn how to deal with different personalities. You have to be able to communicate and express yourself, which is critical for my job, dealing with coaches, agents, players and other executives."
Originally from West Des Moines, Buchanan majored in business management and minored in sports administration during his time at Simpson. He was a pitcher on the Simpson baseball team, which won a conference title when he was a junior.
Buchanan launched his basketball career at Simpson as well, working as an assistant coach from 1997-20002. He spent 10 years in the Portland Trail Blazers organization, mostly as director of college scouting, and then moved to the Charlotte Hornets, as assistant general manager, for two seasons.
The promotion to the Indiana Pacers followed in 2017.
"Buchanan is well respected within the league and his experience in college scouting is something the Pacers would find great value in," Chris Barnewall of CBS Sports wrote.
Buchanan said Simpson's size helped form him.
You can't just be a number at Simpson like you can at a big school," he said. "You have to become somebody when you go to a smaller school, and that's really helped me with my job every day."
Buchanan has never forgotten his Simpson roots. In January 2018, he hosted a group of College alumni and friends, giving them a behind-the-scenes tour of the Pacers practice facility and holding a reception for them. Children were allowed to sit courtside during warm-ups.
Buchanan and his wife, Melanie Richardson Buchanan '98, have two children.