Former SNHU athletic director Chip Polak says he's Trinity's new AD
Two months after resigning from his longtime post as director of athletics at Southern New Hampshire University, Chip Polak started getting antsy.
"I started going crazy sitting around the house," he said. "I'm 63 years old with nothing to do, and I've always prided myself on being a worker. I missed being involved in athletics, mingling with the players and teams. I needed to get back into it."
After reading an article in the New Hampshire Union Leader about Gary Leonard stepping down as athletics director at Manchester's Trinity High School, Polak applied for the job. Yesterday he said he got it, with a start date of July 1.
"It's perfect for me," said Polak. "The school is four miles away from my house if I go the long way."
Along with wealth of administrative experience derived from 28 years as SNHU's AD, Polak also brings to his new post an extensive network of contacts that should be beneficial to Trinity athletes.
"When you've run a college program for as long as I have, you meet a lot of people along the way," said Polak. "I can put it to good use at Trinity. If I see a kid is athletic, has good grades and an interest in furthering his education, I can get on the phone and call an athletic director I know at a college or university."
Polak said he expects to have the same kind of relationships with his coaches at Trinity as the ones he cultivated at SNHU.
"I'm not here to babysit anyone," he said. "I will tell each coach to do their job and do it professionally. From my side, I will also tell them I will back them 100 percent."Polak lauded Leonard, saying, "He did a great job and left me in a situation where I can slide into this job comfortably. Everything for the fall season is in place. It's also great to have people like (vice principal) Pat Smith and (assistant AD) Dick Powers around to talk about sports. Dick lives down the street from my old boss, George Larkin, so we have lots to talk about. I graduated from Fordham, and Dick is a Boston College guy. There's plenty to talk about right there."
Polak said his experience hosting many NHIAA tournaments when he was athletics director at SNHU will be invaluable in his new post.
"I know (NHIAA executive director) Pat Corbin, and now I feel I will have a voice in high school athletics," said Polak. "I served on many committees within the NCAA, and I expect to do so with the NHIAA. I know how it works."During his years at SNHU Polak served on the NCAA Division II Championships Committee, the NCAA Division II Management Council, and the NCAA Division II Men's Basketball and Men's Lacrosse committees, doing stints as national chair of each of the last two. He also served on the board of directors of the Division II Athletic Directors Association.
"Coming to Trinity is just a change of scenery for me," Polak said. "I have nothing but great memories of my time at SNHU. I left behind a great staff, which is going to take that program forward. Now this is my next challenge in life, and I'm looking forward to it."Messages left for Trinity High principal Denis Mailloux last night were not returned as of press time.