MONROE, CT — Craig Semple of Daniel Hand High School, who led the athletic programs for grades 5-12 in Madison for 18 years, has been named as Masuk High School’s new athletic director.
Semple succeeds John DeGennaro as Masuk’s athletic director. DeGennaro, who held the position for 17 years, will return to the classroom as a business teacher at the high school.
In a recent press release, Superintendent of Schools Joseph Kobza said Semple spent considerable time helping student-athletes succeed on and off the field in Madison, while helping to build a championship culture through consistent, dedicated, hard work.
“Craig had a vision for Hand Athletics … he stayed true to that vision … and his pride in the program translated to the coaches and student-athletes,” according to one of Daniel Hand’s coaches.
“I am humbled and honored to be the next director of athletics/PE and health for the Monroe Public Schools,” Semple said. “Athletics, physical education and health have been a major contributor to shaping my life through competition, coaching and teaching. I have been fortunate to serve students and coaches across the state for the past 20 years.”
“I am excited to begin my final journey at Masuk High School,” he continued. “The athletic program in Monroe has been well cultivated and is an exceptional extension of the classroom. As I begin, I expect that as a department we will always be supporting and enhancing the greater mission of the Monroe school community through hard work, commitment and responsibility.”
“I have great respect for the Monroe school district and I’m looking forward to making positive contributions and personal connections with the faculty, students, administration and community,” Semple said. “Go Panthers!”
Among the responsibilities of his position, Semple will also be the instructional leader for PE/Health for K-12.
Prior to his time in Madison, Semple was the K-12 coordinator of PE/Health and athletic director for New Fairfield Public Schools. Before that, he spent over 10 years as a PE/health teacher, while coaching at various levels in the Waterbury school system.
Semple earned a Bachelor of Science degree in human development from Northeastern University, a Master of Science degree in the school health education from Southern Connecticut State University, and a Sixth-Year degree in educational administration and supervision from Sacred Heart University.
A smaller committee of teachers and administrators screened resumes and applications to identify candidates for the Masuk High School Athletic Director Search Committee to interview, and the initial pool of applicants was narrowed down to two finalists.
The search committee was composed of staff, teachers, parents, coaches, a Board of Education member and administrators.
Semple said he believes in the power of relationships in education and has a reputation for engaging student-athletes in authentic ways. As one parent in Madison commented, “at his core, he represents the student-athlete. My kids view him as a mentor.”