This post was written by summer intern Michael O’Neill.
Newly appointed Athletic Director Stephen Fogarty steps into the job with administrative experience and a lifelong interest in sports and wellness.
Fogarty’s official title is the Director of Wellness, Athletics, and Co-Curricular Activities, and he is looking forward to tackling all aspects of the job. He has taken the position after four years as an assistant principal and 15 years as a teacher, all at Melrose High School. Fogarty made the transition from teaching to administration because, in his words, “there was an opportunity for me to move on and become an administrator, and take the skills and the knowledge I had from those 15 years [as a classroom teacher] and try to help more people.”
The athletic director opening was an attractive one for Fogarty: “Athletics are near and dear to my heart,” he says. His experience with sports includes over 20 years of coaching football, strength and conditioning, and wrestling at every level from youth sports to collegiate athletics. Fogarty says sports have more to offer than just fun and exercise: “Athletics is an area where a lot of life lessons are learned—you can experience things, both highs and lows, that you just don’t get somewhere else, and I think it does a great job preparing people for the real world.”
As Director of Wellness, Athletics, and Co-Curricular Activities, Fogarty plans to keep these values at the forefront of his work. In addition to encouraging teamwork on individual squads, he also hopes to connect members of different age groups through athletic programs. “I want to try and bridge the gap between youth groups and the high school sports,” he says. Events like coaching clinics and youth clinics will be held with the aim of increasing crossover between high school sports programs and those designated for younger students.
Fogarty grew up in Melrose and still resides in the city, and he is happy to be working for the Melrose schools: “It’s a great opportunity to be around wonderful people and a supporting community that gives back to its residents,” he says. Adding to that supportiveness is a school administration filled with familiar faces, as Fogarty worked with many of them as assistant principal. “We all come to school here,” he says, “and the goal at the end of the day is to make Melrose Public Schools a better place, and we all share that vision.”
Fogarty is looking forward to seeing Melrose athletes compete and watching the student-athletes represent their schools and their families. Most of all, he is excited to see the payoff for everybody’s hard work. “At the end, to see a student athlete moving on—whether it’s college, or it’s the workforce, or going on to be a college athlete—that’s what you work toward each day, the growth of the student.”