Blair Joins Northern Essex Community College as Athletics Director

Daniel M. Blair. (Courtesy photograph.)

Newburyport native Daniel M. Blair, formerly associate director of athletics at Franklin Pierce University, today became director of athletics at Northern Essex Community College.

At Northern Essex, Blair oversees the college’s six varsity sports—baseball, basketball (men’s), volleyball, softball, cross country (men’s and women’s), and track and field—and a wide range of intramural and club sports and activities. While at Newburyport High School, Blair ran cross country for Coach Don Hennigar and track for Coach Tim Foley, graduating in 2002.

“It’s good to come home, and I’m excited about the vision for athletics at Northern Essex,” he said.  “I think there’s a lot of untapped potential and opportunities for success and growth.”

Blair reports to Michael McCarthy, the college’s vice president of administration and finance, and serves as a member of the vice president’s leadership team.

In his most recent position, Blair oversaw all day to day operations of the Franklin Pierce Athletic Department, Rindge, N.H., with responsibility for administration of 13 varsity programs, budget management, athletic compliance and event marketing.

Blair joined Franklin Pierce as compliance coordinator in 2007, was promoted to assistant athletic director for compliance and special events in 2009, to assistant athletic director/internal operations and compliance in 2013, and to associate director of athletics in 2015.

A graduate of Bridgewater State University with a bachelor’s in Science in Psychology and Franklin Pierce University with a master’s in Science in Sport Facility Management, he participated in cross country and track & field while a student at Bridgewater State, and he has also coached men’s and women’s track and field at Bridgewater.

Northern Essex recently restructured its athletics program with several goals in mind. Officials said the college has one of the most successful athletics programs at a Massachusetts’ community college, and the restructuring is designed to build on that success, involving more students in athletics, expanding offerings in Lawrence, and attracting new resources to address facility needs.

The college’s baseball team, for example, has made six recent trips to the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) World Series and two student-athletes have been drafted by professional teams, most recently Ryan McAuliffe who signed with the Mets this past summer.