Before being Suffolk’s new associate director of athletics, Adam Skaggs was a fan.
As a teenager, Skaggs was a regular at Suffolk men’s basketball games, watching his older brother Tim Skaggs, BGS ’09, play forward for the Rams. “Tim is my best friend, so I would always encourage and support him in any way he could,” says Skaggs. “He was on the program for four years and I remember how much he loved the student-athlete experience.”
Now, more than a decade later, Skaggs is back at the University, tasked with “improving the student-athlete experience” for the more than 300 Suffolk men and women who compete in 19 Division III intercollegiate sports.
In addition to playing an important role in the day-to-day operations of the Department of Athletics, Skaggs will focus on programming for two areas central to not just the world of sport, but society at large: raising awareness of mental health and promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion.
‘A self-starter who gets things done’
A Framingham native, Skaggs comes to Boston after spending the past six years in Indianapolis as the NCAA’s assistant director for Division III governance communications. There, he served as the primary liaison with NCAA Communications to oversee Division III messaging and strategic communications, and assisted in the development of key educational initiatives, policies, and resources, including a successful national social media campaign that gave student-athletes a platform to raise awareness of mental health.
“Adam has a very good skill set and tremendous field experience,” says Suffolk athletics director Cary McConnell. “He is a self-taught person who figures out how to do things, from the idea stage to developing programs that benefit student-athletes and everyone involved.”
“Listening to what people have to say is very important, especially when it comes to decision making,” says Skaggs.
His role was made possible through an NCAA grant that helps Division III members improve the representation of ethnic and gender minorities in mid- to senior-level administrative positions. Suffolk was one of five institutions to receive the fellowship this year.
McConnell says he is very grateful for the NCAA’s support. “I believe that most [of why we received the grant] It’s because the Department of Athletics fully supports the University’s commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.”