Easthampton High School names Brian Miller interim athletic director

  • Easthampton has named Brian Miller its interim athletic director. Miller has coached boys basketball for 19 years and girls soccer for seven. Miller replaces Patti Dougherty, who resigned at the end of August. STAFF PHOTO/KEVIN GUTTING

Published: 10/29/2018 7:22:00 PM

EASTHAMPTON — Fall sports practice had already started when former Easthampton athletic director Patti Dougherty resigned at the end of August.

She agreed to stay on and help out until the school hired a replacement, but Easthampton needed to move quickly. The school posted the position for an interim internal candidate.

A committee of community members, student athletes, coaches, union representatives and administrators considered three applications and recommended Brian Miller to principal Kevin Burke.

Miller teaches physical education at the school and has coached boys basketball for the past 19 years and girls soccer for seven years.

“I was contacted by the principal, and he said the position was open if I wanted to apply,” Miller said. “I talked to my wife and decided it was something we wanted to pursue. I think it’s a good fit. I’m at the school quite a bit, know the ins and outs.”

That familiarity stood out to the committee and Burke.

“It was important to coaches that he is in the building as an educator and available to students pretty much all the time,” Burke said.

Dougherty could not be reached for comment.

Miller was hired on an interim basis Oct. 10, Burke said.

“As we go through the year we’ll re-evaluate where we’re gonna go from there,” Burke said. “We wanted to make sure we went through the process.”

Miller plans to continue teaching and coaching while taking on this new role. He always figured he’d become an athletic director at some point. Growing up in Nausett, Miller looked up to Jack Donahue, who also filled many roles as a soccer coach, athletic director, hockey coach and baseball coach.

“He did a little bit of everything as well,” Miller said. “My whole background growing up in phys ed, it’s a natural progression.”

His first few weeks have kept Miller busy. Rainy days necessitated cancellation and rescheduling decisions. He’s been the site supervisor at football and soccer games.

“It’s time-consuming, for sure. There’s so much stuff,” Miller said. “I don’t know half the stuff yet. Every day seems like something pops up and keeps you busy.”

But the effort has been rewarding.

“You feel like every day you’ve accomplished something,” Miller said. “Being there for the kids and accomplishing something and pulling off events pretty satisfying.”

Kyle Grabowski can be reached at kgrabowski@gazettenet.com. Follow him on Twitter @kylegrbwsk.

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