By John Anderson

Athletic Director Brian Davis raised the bar for high school athletic captains this past Tuesday when he coordinated a Captains Leadership Workshop. Close to 40 seniors and juniors who had gotten the nod from their coaches attended.

Davis brought in Tom Lauder, Retired Leicester High Principal and former AHS Varsity Football Coach; Rich Riley, MIAA Administrator and former Marlborough High Athletic Director; and Shawn Conrad, Men’s Basketball Coach at Anna Maria College. Local sports writer and regular AHS game announcer Ken Powers was also on hand to help.

After an individual survey about improving AHS athletics, the students answered a series of questions with an advisor and presented to the body as a whole. They determined that a team captain is a role model who can lead his or her peers through team bonding and trust into a cohesive family. Communication between the captain and both the players and coach is another priority.

While many positive words were spoken during the evening, a few stood out. Rich Riley told the students, “You’re the same as your teammates, but with additional responsibility. You are always a leader.”

Coach Conrad gave the young captains some solid advice, “Leadership and captaincy is not about words, it’s about actions.” He added, “Leadership is getting people to do something because they want to do it, not because they are being told to do it.” Finally, Conrad reminded the captains, “ Captains must act positively when adversity strikes.”

Davis intends to reconvene this group on a monthly basis to see how things are going and to improve the Rockets athletic program. This was a great first step, and this concept is likely to evolve into something very positive.
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