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Following a five-month national search, Emmanuel College has announced the appointment of Olivia Berry as Director of Athletics.
Berry, who has served as the College’s Assistant Director of Athletics and as Head Coach of the Women’s Softball team, becomes the sixth head of Saints athletics.
“Olivia Berry has demonstrated that she has the vision, expertise and passion to advance Emmanuel’s storied athletics program and its legacy of competitiveness and success,” said Emmanuel College President Mary K. Boyd, Ph.D. “What is more, she understands the vital role that athletics plays in fulfilling the College’s Catholic educational mission to form the whole student—and in cultivating the values of teamwork, selflessness and integrity. We look forward to all Olivia will do to attract promising student-athletes to our 16 Division III varsity athletic teams and to provide them with superb opportunities to electrify our community with their athleticism and heart.”
Berry joined the Emmanuel athletic staff in a full-time capacity during the summer of 2017 as Head Softball Coach and was promoted to Assistant Athletic Director in July 2021 after serving as the department’s Assistant Sports Information Director for her first four years. Berry oversaw key aspects of department operations while serving as the Athletic liaison for academic eligibility. In addition, she has served as the Senior Woman Administrator (SWA) for the department and as the College’s NCAA Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Liaison.
She takes over the position from Marc Taney who served as the Interim AD following Brendan McWilliams’ departure last August after his 12 years at Emmanuel and five in the AD role.
“In my time at Emmanuel, I have experienced an extraordinary community and am honored to be leading in the capacity of Director of Athletics,” said Berry. “I look forward to developing our department under new presidential leadership while continuing the traditions that make our community the Saints!”
Berry made history with the Softball program in 2021, leading the squad to their first GNAC Championship and NCAA tournament berth. In their NCAA tourney debut, the Saints posted a 3-2 victory over No. 11 Christopher Newport University before finishing the year with a 21-6 record. The team was ranked as high as No. 6 in the New England Regional Rankings, and Berry was named the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) Coach of the Year while mentoring a conference-record 10 GNAC All-Conference selections including the GNAC Pitcher and Rookie of the Year as well as another two National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) All-Region honorees.
During the 2022 Softball campaign, Berry became the winningest coach in program history and the first to reach 100 career victories with a 2-1 walk-off win in the GNAC tournament over Simmons University. She was named the GNAC Coach of the Year for the second straight season with seven players earning All-Conference honors and three being tabbed to the NFCA All-Region squad. Her 2022 squad finished the season with 26 wins, tying the program record for wins in a single season and along the way recorded a program-best 20-game winning streak.
In this new role, Berry joins the Student Affairs Dean’s and Director’s team and will report to Emmanuel College Vice President of Student Affairs Dr. Jennifer M. Scott Forry.
“As a dedicated and talented professional, I have full confidence in Olivia’s ability to continue to bring our Athletics program to new heights while providing our student-athletes with the best D-III experience,” said Forry.
Berry holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology from Trinity College (Conn.) as well as a Master’s in Sports Leadership from Northeastern University.
“Along with my family, I cannot thank the Emmanuel community enough for giving me the privilege to take on this new role,” said Berry.
She will assume the AD role in an official capacity on February 20, 2023, finishing out the spring season as Head Coach of the Softball program. Information regarding a search for a new Softball Head Coach will be shared at a later date. Emmanuel currently sponsors 16 NCAA Division III varsity programs (m/w soccer, m/w cross country, men’s golf, m/w volleyball, m/w basketball, softball, m/w lacrosse, and m/w track and field (indoor & outdoor). The Saints are proud members of the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) and have combined to win a total of 38 GNAC Championships.
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