Longtime coach will continue as head of SCCC baseball team
After more than 30 years at the helm of the SCCC Athletic Department, Galen McSpadden will step down as athletic director Dec. 18. The SCCC Board of Trustees accepted McSpadden’s resignation as part of the regular personnel report at its monthly meeting Monday.
College president Dr. Ken Trzaska expressed appreciation for McSpadden’s contributions to SCCC, while reassuring the board that steps have been taken to minimize the stress of change.
“Galen isn’t going far and will continue as head baseball coach and remain in a number of leadership roles on campus,” Trzaska said. “He’s agreed to serve as a consultant to the SCCC Foundation, and as interim AD until a replacement can be found.”
McSpadden said his decision stemmed from a desire to see the college continue to grow.
“This position has outgrown a dual role,” he said. “The expectations, the requirements, the deadlines involved with NJCAA Region VI, the KJCCC, the demands from those organizations that we answer to … are such that this position needs to be separated from the coaching position.”
McSpadden accepted AD responsibilities in the mid-1980s to help fill “an unexpected gap” that resulted from staff turnover in his early days as SCCC baseball coach.
“As a whole, this institution has grown so much over the past 30 years,” McSpadden said. “We’re nationally known. Our sports programs are strong, both in terms of athletics and academics. Someone needs to protect and continue that, raise the bar of that, as a full-time athletic director.”
Trzaska, too, focused on what’s ahead for the college.
“We’re all working hard each day to move Seward forward,” he said. “Galen has been a key part of that, and his decision to resign as AD leaves an enormous gap in our athletic and campus leadership. I consider Galen a colleague anyone should be lucky to have.”
The athletic staff at SCCC concur. McSpadden met with his team of coaches and staff at 6 p.m. Monday to announce his decision. The meeting was emotional, he said.
“It’s not like I’m leaving, it’s that I’m shifting,” McSpadden said. “I didn’t dream it would be that hard. But this is the best thing for the college. It gives us time to find a person to take on the AD position.
“I can tell you I’ve tried to put the institution’s mission ahead of every decision I’ve made over the years,” McSpadden said.
In that respect, things haven’t changed, said Trzaska.
“Galen ranks as one of the strongest, most dedicated and kindest colleague I have had the honor to work side by side with. He is an all-around all-star, and the brand of leadership and spirit he brings to Seward reflects in the impressive roster of accomplishments and advancements he has helped shape for Seward.”