Karrah Ellis, who replaces the longtime Athletic Director Fran Whitten, also begins her first year in the new position.
Northborough Patch talked with Ellis about her new role.
Northborough Patch: What did you find appealing about taking the position in Northborough?
Karrah Ellis: Algonquin is a great school with an amazing reputation both academically as well as athletically. The Director of Athletics position is a full time position and to me that is a great opportunity to do wonderful things with and for the student-athletes of ARHS.
NP: What do you like about the program, and what changes do you hope to bring to it?
NP: How many women ADs have there been at Algonquin? It would be surprising if this still happened in this day and age, but have you encountered any issues at all in your career because you are female?
KE: It doesn’t matter if you are a female or male athletic director. We are all here for the same reason: to provides our student-athletes with as many opportunities as possible; provide them with quality programs and a quality experience.
NP: Are there any sports not at Algonquin that you'd like to see? How about sports that exist, but don't have a lot of interest?
KE: If there is interest in a sport that is not currently offered, I’m definitely open to the possibility of adding it to the program.
NP: What is your favorite sport?
KE: I truly enjoy all sports! I love watching the student-athletes compete-whatever the sport is. When the Summer and Winter Olympics are on, I am glued to the TV. I watch everything from water polo matches and team hand ball in the summer, to curling and speed skating in the winter. It’s fun and I love to see that competitive spirit. I did play basketball in college and do miss playing. And, with a husband who is a head football coach, I can’t help but love that sport as well.
NP: At Algonquin it is a focus to combine athletics with academics. Gone are the days, it seems, where the "football star" slides by with a passing grade just because he's a football star. Do you find that that mentality is slipping at most schools, or is Algonquin simply better at fusing a better overall educational experience than most?
KE: At ARHS, we’re students first and then athletes. The primary focus is to get a great education. I think all of our fall athletic teams are going to have great season. I can’t wait for the games/meets/matches/competitions to start!