‘Taking it all in’: Old Rochester welcomes new athletic director

Jul 21, 2023

MATTAPOISETT — Student athletes, teachers and parents can expect to see a new face on the field and on the court at Old Rochester Regional High School in the fall.

On Monday, July 24, Chris Carrig joined the school district as Old Rochester’s new athletic director, filling the role previously held by Bill Tilden.

Coming to work at Old Rochester was a “natural fit,” said Carrig, who said that he was drawn to this position because he wouldn’t have to “divide his energy” between the role of athletic director and a teaching position.

However, with the title of athletic director, Carrig will also serve as the school’s campus aide.

“This is a hybrid role,” said Carrig. “But that allows me to get into the hallways, into the classrooms and into the lunch room, circulating with the student athletes for the entire school day.”

Carrig comes to Old Rochester from Fairhaven High School where he was the athletic director. He oversaw numerous improvements to the operating procedures for Fairhaven High School’s athletic department as well as a $2.1 million stadium field and lighting upgrade, according to a press release from the Old Rochester Regional School District.

He also worked to improve the branding of and communication by the program through social media and a new website. Earlier in his career, from 2009 to 2018, Carrig worked at Bishop Stang High School in North Dartmouth, and was the assistant athletic director from 2017-2018.

Carrig noted that working at Old Rochester could give him the opportunity to become more involved in the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association, which governs all high school athletic programs across the state.

“I'd like to be a member of a committee that oversees rule changes [or] that oversees waiver processes … and tries to drive policy on things that might make statewide processes a little tighter,” he said.

But during his first year at Old Rochester, Carrig plans to focus solely on his role as athletic director.

“Observing [and] taking in what's here before I try and bite off all these other ambitions I think is really important for year one,” he said. “I'm interested in becoming part of the fabric [of the school].”

For Carrig, this also means that he doesn’t plan to coach any sports this academic year.

“I'm not going to divide my energy in a way that makes life difficult for anybody in this athletic program. I'd like to continue to succeed,” he said. “We have a very talented coaching staff here that knows what needs to get done.”

Old Rochester Regional High School Principal Mike Devoll called Carrig a “positive force” among South Coast coaches.

“We are excited for [Carrig] to continue the work that Tilden accomplished over the past 16 years,” said Devoll. “The beauty of this transition for us is that we are moving from [Tilden] to [Carrig] in a positive way. Tilden is leaving on his own terms and will continue to coach at Old Rochester. [He] will be an available resource for [Carrig] and has already assisted in the transition.”

According to Carrig, who has worked with Tilden throughout his career, being able to tap into Tilden’s experience is “immeasurable.”

“It's going to be hard for a lot of people to mentally replace Tilden in this office and in this role,” said Carrig. “It will be different and there'll be adjustments. I'll learn to navigate it and so will they.”

Looking forward to the 2023-2024 school year beginning in the fall, Carrig is “well aware of the expectations and history of achievement” at Old Rochester Regional High School.

“I hope everybody gives me the same consideration I'm willing to give everybody whether they're a coach, student, athlete, teacher in the building [or] community member, my door is open,” he said.