Haverhill’s O’Brien Recognized by the NIAAA

Trinity Stadium, prior to receiving upgrades credited, in part, to Thomas O’Brien, Haverhill’s director of athletics . (WHAV News photograph)

Thomas O’Brien, Director of Athletics and Wellness for Haverhill Public Schools, was just recognized for his impact and contributions to high school and college athletics by the National Interscholastic Athletic Administration Association.

O’Brien received the NIAAA’s 2018 “Inside the Field of Athletic Administration” award in recognition of his many years of “exemplary service and dedication to the thousands of boys and girls involved in interscholastic athletics throughout the state,” according to a release put out by the agency.

Among O’Brien’s many accomplishments in Haverhill, he helped establish the Haverhill High School Athletic Hall of Fame. Since becoming Haverhill’s athletic director in 2011, O’Brien has overseen $4 million in renovations to the Haverhill Stadium on Lincoln Avenue.

“Tom has almost doubled the participation of students in all levels of our athletic program, and has assisted many students in seeking college opportunities and scholarships,” Superintendent James F. Scully said.

“Trinity Stadium is a major revenue source for our sports program and Tom is the reason for that success,” Superintendent Scully added. “I could go on and on about Tom’s character, his many accomplishments and the impact he has had on our district, our students and our school community, but simply put he a good and decent man, devoted to his family. Since coming to Haverhill has put all of his efforts into improving opportunities for others.”

Throughout his professional career, O’Brien has been involved in student athletics at the state, local and national level. He is vice-president, secretary and treasurer of the Merrimack Valley Conference, as well as the conference’s director for football, soccer and boys’ swimming.

At the state level, O’Brien is a member of the Massachusetts Baseball Coaches Association and serves on the MIAA Baseball Committee and MIAA Golf Committee.

O’Brien has served on many committees at the national level, including the NCAA Division II Men’s Lacrosse Championship Regional Advisory Committee and the NCAA Division II Baseball Championship Regional Committee. He also has served as Media Coordinator for several major NCAA Division I Basketball tournaments.

A graduate of Saint Leo University with a B.A. in Sports management and Master of Business Administration, O’Brien has been an athletic director for 23 years (12 at high school and 11 at the college level).

“On behalf of the many he has guided, in recognition of his achievements and with deep appreciation, I congratulate Tom for this very prestigious award and thank him for so much,” Superintendent Scully said.

Prior to coming to Haverhill, O’Brien was Athletic Director at Nashoba Regional High School from 2006 to 2011. Previous to that, he was assistant athletic director at Merrimack College from 2000 to 2006.