St. Mary’s High School is proud to announce Athletic Director Allison Fondale has been named one of two 2020 Maryland State Athletic Directors of the Year by the Maryland State Athletic Directors Association (MSADA.) Fondale shares the honor with Northwest High School Athletic Director Anne Rossiter. The award is presented to athletic administrators who have made a significant impact on the lives of students and used athletics to achieve progress in the social and cultural environments of their school and the community. Fondale is only the third athletic director from a Catholic school to receive the distinction since the award’s inception in 1978.
Fondale, a Certified Master Athletic Administrator, has served as Athletic Director at St. Mary’s High School since 2014, overseeing 85 coaches and 36 different teams at the freshman-sophomore, junior varsity and varsity levels. Prior to joining St. Mary’s, Fondale coached lacrosse at several institutions including the United States Naval Academy, Ohio University, the University of Maryland and Duke University. Fondale has also served on the Executive Committee of the Interscholastic Athletic Association of Maryland (IAAM)/Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) and has been the Swimming Sports Chair for five years, has been a MSADA representative for five years and currently serves as the IAAM Vice President. In her time so far at St. Mary’s High School, Fondale has played an integral role in not only the development and success of the school’s athletic department, but also the betterment of the school community as a whole.
“Allison Fondale is a servant leader who guides her team to make St. Mary’s and Annapolis a better place,” said St. Mary’s High School Principal Mindi Imes. “Allison is a leader who builds a team and, because she is a self-motivated professional, her team seeks to emulate her example.”
In the six years that Fondale has served as a leader at St. Mary’s High School, she has led the charge on numerous critical projects and opportunities. Fondale assisted with the design and implementation of the school’s Team and Ministry House facility on Bestgate Road in 2017 and forged a new partnership with Play Like a Champion Today, a program that provides professional development for coaches, guidance for parents and support for student athletes, in 2018. In addition, she introduced both the CHAMPS (Character, Honor and Morality in play by Student Athletes) club and the Student Athletes in Leadership (SAIL) program, which furthers the leadership skills and potential of student athletes and captains. She also instigated the return of sailing as an offering to students and forged partnerships with brands and organizations including BSN Sports, Under Armour, Dakrontics and the NFHS Network to further expand St. Mary’s Athletics’ reach and impact.
"I am honored to receive the MSADA Athletic Director of the Year Award,” said Fondale. “This award is reflective of the hard work, dedication and commitment of our St. Mary's coaches, staff and administration. Principal Mindi Imes had a vision for our athletic department seven years ago and her support has enabled our department to hire and retain great coaches and implement programs that are unique to St. Mary's, which have had a positive impact on the athletic careers of our student athletes."
Under Fondale’s tenure, St. Mary’s High School has seen a seven percent increase in student athletic participation, won 21 championship titles, set a new record for the number of championship titles achieved in one year, had six coaches named ‘Coach of the Year’ and five student athletes named ‘Athlete of the Year.’
“Winning is not Allison’s only focus,” said Imes. “Allison guides our program toward our Catholic school mission, which is to foster an environment with mentors that help develop our students spiritually, mentally, socially and physically. She builds a community among her team—one that is working to live out the mission of St. Mary’s High School one student athlete at a time.”