Charles Simmons wins Murray Award

Published 9:40 am Wednesday, August 4, 2010

He is a man of great wisdom, strength and personality.

He is someone who works hard every day, supports his staff and gives his all to the program he is responsible for. Those attributes are some of the reasons he is one of the best in the business.

During the 2009-10 academic year, Hertford County High School Athletic Director Charles Simmons showed yet again why he is considered one of the top people in his trade.

Facing two major hires during the off-season, Simmons tabbed a pair of rookie coaches to guide his varsity football team and girls basketball squad. While some may have questioned the wisdom of hiring the two young men, Simmons obviously knew what he was doing.

Scott Privott started the school year off well, going 13-1 during his team’s gridiron campaign and capturing a Northeastern Coastal Conference championship.

He was followed by new Head Girl’s Basketball Coach Justin Frederes who also showed why Simmons chose him for the post as he also captured a Northeastern Coastal Conference title while posting an 11-1 mark in the league.

In addition to those two, the Bears won a Northeastern Coastal Conference baseball championship during the season under skipper Chris Towell, who was also hired by the AD.

Simmons has been an excellent mentor to the coaches on his staff and has been a quality administrator as well.

“He’s been a mentor to me,” Privott said. “I’ve learned so much from him over the last 18 years.”

Privott said during his first year as Head Football Coach, he was able to count on Simmons.

“He was like my backbone,” Privott said.

As for his skills as an AD, Privott noted that Simmons was a people person and a good leader.

Towell said he was appreciative of all Simmons had done for him.

“He’s really supportive of our program,” Towell said. “He has a lot of sports to oversee, but he makes time for all of them.

“Personally, he has been a mentor to me,” he added. “He has so much knowledge of the proper way to be a teacher and a coach. He’s someone I look up to.”

Frederes said he appreciated the help Simmons gave him during the season.

“Coach Simmons is an excellent leader as a coach and as an Athletic Director,” Frederes said. “He does a great job of keeping his coaches informed of the regulations and goals we’ve set as a school.

“With it being my first year as a varsity coach, he helped me a lot,” Frederes added. “He would often share his experiences with me and that’s very helpful.”

Frederes said Simmons had an open-door policy which helped his coaches tremendously.

Simmons’ hard work and dedication to his coaches, his players and Hertford County High School are the reasons he is honored as the Richard W. Murray Athletic Director of the Year.

The Richard Murray Award recognizes excellence by an athletic director in the Roanoke-Chowan area by the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald. It is named in honor of retired Ahoskie High School and Hertford County High School Athletic Director Richard Murray. During his tenure, he symbolized excellence in that post which led him to be named to the North Carolina Athletic Directors Hall of Fame.