Ronald H. Kennedy, Jr., Ed.D. Athletic Director, Coaching & Sport Administration Expert

Ronald H. Kennedy, Jr., Athletic Director, Coaching & Sport Administration Expert

Dr. Ronald Kennedy is a school sports and education expert with over 25 years of experience as a teacher, coach, and Athletic Director. Through his forensic casework, Dr. Kennedy evaluates administrative, procedural, and safety processes as they relate to incidents of injury, harassment, bullying and assault that occur in educational or sports-related settings.

Beginning his career in the classroom, Dr. Kennedy quickly assumed dual responsibility as the Athletic Director of Donegal School District in addition to his duties as a high school social studies teacher. He performed both roles for over 15 years, until switching to Athletic Director full-time. His knowledge of the educational system and its students made him an invaluable resource. As Athletic Director he played a critical role in the design and development of new facilities, including the high school and gymnasium, athletic stadium, and softball, soccer, and baseball fields. This process involved collaborating with third party vendors of fitness equipment and facility components to ensure that the design and layout of the facilities were safe, practical, and appropriate for their intended use.

In addition to being a coach himself, Dr. Kennedy supervised and trained 65 coaches across 14 varsity sports in his district. This led to his involvement in the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA), where he served as Chairman and board member for nearly a decade before assuming his current role as Executive Director. He oversees 121 member schools, developing policies at both the local and state level, presiding over eligibility hearings, and organizing competitions, among other duties. At all levels of his involvement, Dr. Kennedy’s expertise has been focused on ensuring that school sports are accessible, fair, and safe for all student athletes.

Dr. Kennedy earned his Doctorate in Education Leadership and Management from Drexel University, with his dissertation focused on the experiences of transgender high school athletes. He earned his M.Ed. in Sports Management from Millersville University. He is a Certified Master Athletic Administrator, and an ASEP/NFHS Certified Instructor in Coaching Principles. Ron is also certified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education for Secondary Social Studies 7-12 Instructional II.

Professional Experience

Robson Forensic, Inc.

Associate

2022 to present

Provide technical investigations, analysis, reports, and testimony toward the resolution of accidents, incidents, and injuries in the areas of:

Athletic Safety Protocols: supervision, equipment, maintenance, surfacing, organizational policy, and practices.

Risk Management: identify hazards, incidence and occurrence reporting, accident trending, preventative analysis, program, and safety compliance.

Safety: emergency protocol and procedures, facility-based emergency, evacuation, and disaster planning.

Planning: development of rules and regulations for athletic programs and communicating with athletes, parents, and coaches. Plans preventative strategies to avoid injuries.

Supervision: supervision of safe grounds for the practice and development of safe practices consistent with athletes age and capability.

Evaluating athlete’s abilities: maintaining health and physical records for players and assessing clearance before returning to play. Ensuring athletes are matched according to size and ability.

Maintaining safe playing conditions: ensuring safe conditions regarding weather, potential hazards, defective or wrong equipment and hazardous environments.

Providing proper equipment: ensuring all equipment and fittings are proper and consistent with national standards to maintain safety of athletes.

Conditioning: cardiovascular and musculoskeletal conditioning consistent with the activity.

Emergency care: preparation and training of Coaches and athletic administrators.

Emergency protocols and practices: to ensure equipment and communication systems are in place.

Safe transportation: accountability of participants, processes, and safe practices.

Selecting, training, and supervising coaching staff: awareness about safety precautions and potential injury.

Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association (PIAA) District III

2005 to present
Executive Director 2020 to present
  • Maintains and manages the operations and functions of PIAA District III.
  • Investigates questions concerning eligibility, athletic management and control, athletic relations, contractual obligations, and other matters requiring study by the PIAA District III Committee.
  • Assists in the planning and organizing of interscholastic athletic championship programs.
  • Performs secretarial responsibilities to include preparing minutes and reports for distribution to the PIAA District III Committee and member schools.
  • Research eligibility questions and provides written interpretations for the information and use of the PIAA District III Committee.
  • Prepares reports as requested.
  • Investigates in season and out of season violations. Prepares reports for this group.
  • Reviews and approves all student eligibility transfer cases.

Chairman and Member on Board of Control 2013-2019

  • Preside over a committee of 16 members from 6 leagues.
  • Ensure fair and equitable competitions among 121 member schools.
  • Preside over eligibility hearings at both local and state level.
  • Developed current power ranking formula used to seed teams in playoffs.
  • Developed athletic policies at both local and state level.
  • Conduct monthly meetings.

Vice Chair and Member on the Board of Directors 2010-2013

  • Recognized his or her responsibility to set the example for other board members.
  • Worked with the Chair to assist in developing the agendas for all meetings.
  • Advised the Chair on appointing volunteers to key leadership positions, including positions as chair of board committees and task forces.
  • Assisted the Chair by taking on responsibility as necessary for communication with Committee Chairs.
  • In the Chair’s absence:
    • Presided at meetings.
    • Served as ex officio member of standing committees.

Golf Chairman 2005-2019

Responsible for the safe and efficient operation of the PIAA District III golf tournament with specific responsibilities to include but not limited to:

  • Establish the conditions under which the competition is to be played.
  • Define the Boundaries and Margins of the golf course.
  • Determine hole locations.
  • Determine playable of the course.
  • Establish emergency weather procedures.
  • Establish starting times and groupings.
  • Determine the manner in which ties will be broken.
  • Establish rules and regulations under which the tournament would be played.
  • Resolve disputes and render decisions.
  • Establish pace of play policy.

Lancaster-Lebanon League

2005 to present
Executive Director 2019-present

The Executive Director is responsible for the effective operation of the League with specific duties of:

  • Coordinates, attends, and gives reports of all meetings.
  • Represents the league at inter-district & district meetings.
  • Acquires and recommends chairpersons of individual sports.
  • Assists and revises sports guidelines when necessary.
  • Responsible for all financial matters pertaining to league playoffs.
  • Reviews league by-laws and makes recommendations to the Board regarding safe operating procedures.
  • Prepares and recommends to the Board a proposed yearly budget.
  • Performs duties of the treasurer.
  • Serves as public relations officer for the association.
  • Evaluates and determines outcomes when disputes arise from between member schools.

Golf Chairman 2005-2016

  • Establish the conditions under which the competition is to be played.
  • Define the Boundaries and Margins of the golf course.
  • Determine hole locations.
  • Determine playable of the course.
  • Establish emergency weather procedures.
  • Establish starting times and groupings.
  • Determine the manner in which ties will be broken.
  • Establish rules and regulations under which the tournament would be played.
  • Resolve disputes and render decisions.
  • Establish pace of play policy.

Donegal School District (High School)

1994 to 2020
Athletic Director 1996-2020
  • Assisted in the design of new athletic stadium including extensive research on turf fields.
  • Assisted in the design of new softball, soccer. and baseball fields.
  • Responsible for supervision of 65 coaches and 13 varsity sports (football, soccer, field hockey, cross country, golf, wrestling, basketball, swimming, baseball, softball, track and field, tennis, and cheerleading).
  • Developed Emergency Action Plan and Lighting Evacuation policy.
  • Approved and managed all paperwork for equipment lease requests involving the athletic department including but not limited to temporary lighting, scissor lifts, and port-a-potties.
  • Created a master sports calendar that includes league and non- league games/events.
  • Coordinated gym, building and athletic field use with the district office and maintained the district building use calendar.
  • Coordinated gym use for practices and games and gave final approval for the use of either the gym or the athletic field.
  • Worked with coaching staff and transportation supervisor to schedule all athletic departure times and provide bus supervision with trip sheets.
  • Managed all travel arrangements and overnight accommodations for players or athletic teams (and coaches) competing in postseason competition.
  • Seek and recommend suitable competition for all non-conference events/games.
  • Hired all officials for 7-12 and non-conference games.
  • Confirmed all official’s contracts and all non-conference contest contracts.
  • Secured game workers for athletic contests, chain crews, announcers, clock operators, score keepers, line judges, etc. and assumed responsibility to submit the list of contacted workers for that contest to the event supervisor prior to the event.
  • Created athletic expense request sheets for payment of officials and other workers to district office.
  • Coordinated the collection of rosters for program information as needed.
  • Supervised, and arranged game help for all home athletic contests, including security and police coverage.
  • Assisted in the selection of coaches for the athletic program.
  • Evaluated all athletic programs on an annual basis. Made recommendations for improvement to the building principal and district administrator.
  • Created coaching evaluation form.
  • Evaluated and held a conference with all coaches within three weeks after the conclusion of their sport season.
  • Mediated the resolution of problems, issues, and concerns that arose between coaches and athletic programs.
  • Provided a channel of communication through which students and the community expressed their concerns about an athletic program.
  • Provided for in-service training of coaching staff as needed.
  • Disseminated PIAA materials and enforced PIAA rules and regulations, including player eligibility.
  • Collected, filed, and notified athletes and coaches regarding student eligibility as it pertains to the PIAA physical cards and athletic code of conduct.
  • Ensured and collected a properly completed physical card or alternate year physical card for every student participating in athletics.
  • Distributed athletic training rules yearly to all athletic participants. Managed and maintained on file a signed copy of student letters of intent.
  • Administered the school athletic code in a fair and consistent manner that was within the intent of the code.
  • Ensured district adherence to all PIAA and district policies, administrative rules, procedures, and codes relating to and participation in athletics.
  • Organized in collaboration with the Athletic Trainer the school’s Sports Medicine Program.
  • Created the coach’s handbook detailing policies and procedures for the supervision and safety of student athletes, positive coaching, team management and sportsmanship.
  • Fiscal responsibility for total athletic budget including all expenses and revenues.
  • Created student code of conduct handbook detailing rules and expectations of student athletes.
  • Created an accountability system for emergency card procedures for all student athletes and coaches used for all away events.
  • Served as liaison between coaching staff and School board during contract negotiations.
  • Responsible for accurate and timely Title IX reporting.

Classroom Teacher 1994-2011

  • 9th Grade honors Ancient History
  • 10th Grade World History
  • 11th Grade Government and Economics
  • 9th Grade Co-teaching model

Assistant Football Coach 1987-2008

  • Special Teams, Defensive coordinator, and offensive coordinator.
  • Developed goal setting and competitive performance skills.
  • Responsible for proper fitting of all equipment.
  • Taught specific football skills in a safe manner and in accordance with National Federation of State High of School Association (NFHS) standards.
  • Responsible for safely conducting all drills
  • Completed safety training courses in CPR, first aid, concussion awareness and sudden cardiac arrest.
  • Supervised athletes’ during travel, competitions, and practice.
  • Conducted research and analyzed previous games to develop game plans, tactics, techniques, formations, and strategies.
  • Organized and scheduled tryouts and shortlisting potential players.
  • Evaluated and determined individual player abilities, strengths, and weaknesses, and factoring these into the gameplay and strategy sessions.
  • Ensured the football field is availability for practice sessions and that players met punctuality and attendance requirements.
  • Established rules and regulations and ensured players were familiar with them.
  • Organized team building sessions and activities off the field.
  • Fostered good sportsmanship in all team players, resolved disputes, and addressed negative behavior in a timely manner.
  • Identified exceptional players for scouting scholarships and to play in professional leagues.
  • Ensured all sports equipment was available, safe and in working order.

Head Basketball Coach 1998-2002

  • Knowledge of the game and the rules.
  • Studied and evaluated the skills and abilities of the players to maximize performance.
  • Developed practices to optimize performance.
  • Provided mentorship to players and assistant coaches
  • Taught players the rules of the game.
  • Trained assistant coaches on comprehensive methods, polices, and procedures.

Professional Credentials

  • Pennsylvania Department of Education Certification: Secondary Social Studies 7-12 Instructional II
  • Certified Master Athletic Administrator (CMAA), May 2000
  • ASEP/NFHS Certified Instructor in Coaching Principles

Education

  • Ed.D., Education Leadership and Management, Drexel University, Dissertation: “A Qualitative Inquiry into the Experiences of Transgender Youth on High School Sports Teams.”
  • M.Ed., Sports Management, Millersville University
  • Pennsylvania Department of Education Certification: Secondary Social Studies 7-12 Instructional II
  • B.S., Business Administration-Marketing, Susquehanna University

Professional Development

NIAAA (National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association) Leadership Training Institute and Certification Program Courses Taken:

  • LTC 799: Standards of Excellence in Interscholastic Athletic Programs, 2017
  • LTC 790: Leadership Training Instructional Methods and Techniques, 2017
  • LTC 723: Administration of Professional Growth Programs for Interscholastic Athletic Personnel, 2017
  • LTC 710A: Current Issues in American Sports, 2017
  • LTC 709: Communications, Methods, and Applications for Athletic Administrators, 2017
  • LTC 705: Coach Centered Educational Athletics a Character Based Coach to Coach Mentoring Program, 2017
  • LTC 703: Student Centered Educational Athletics Performance Beyond the X’s and O’s, 2017
  • LTC 625: Management of Game and Event Announcing, 2015
  • LTC 619: The Power of Curb Appeal, 2015
  • LTC 616: Management of Indoor Physician Plant Assets, 2015
  • LTC 615: Athletic Field Management, 2015
  • LTC 523: Administration of Professional Growth Programs for Interscholastic Athletics Personnel, 2005
  • LTC 510: Athletic Administration: Legal Issues IV (Social Media, Transgender Participation, Event Management & Security, Pregnant & Parenting Student-Athletes, & Intellectual Property), 2005
  • LTC 501: Guiding Foundations & Philosophies, 2005
  • LTC 523: Administration of Professional Growth Programs for Interscholastic Athletics Personnel, 2005
  • LTC 516: Administration of Physical Plant Assets, 2005
  • LTC 590: Instructional Methods and Technique, 2005
  • LTC 509 Athletic Administration: Communication, Leadership and Decision Making, 2002
  • LTC 503: Enhancing Organization Management, 2001
  • LTC 505 Innovative Methods of Mentoring and Problem Solving, 2001
  • LTC 506: Legal Issues II (Title IX & Sexual Harassment), 2001
  • LTC 504: Legal Issues I (Liability for Sports Injuries & Risk Management), 2001
  • LTC 525: Athletic Field Management, 2001

Speaking Engagements/Presentations

  • School Leadership and the Transgender Experience, PASA-PSBA School Leadership Conference, Hershey, PA, June 2019
  • Transgender Youth on High School Sports Teams, PASA (Pennsylvania Association of Secondary School Administrators), 2016
  • "What Makes a Good Coach,” Lancaster General Health Coaches Clinic, March 2015
  • Panel Participant on Sports Specialization, Lancaster General Health Coaches Clinic, 2015
  • Introduction to Coaching Principles (Lancaster Youth Coaches), March 2009
  • LTC 709 Communication, Leadership and Decision Making, PSADA Conference, March 2009, March 2011
  • Leadership Academy for LLL Team Captains, Franklin and Marshall University, March 2009
  • PA Sports Youth Summit (Youth Sports Concerns), Penn State University, January 2008
  • PA Sports Youth Summit (Youth Sports Concerns), Willow Valley Resort, January 2008
  • Leadership Academy for Donegal Team Captains, Donegal High School, April 2007
  • ASEP Coaching Principles, Ephrata High School, June 2006
  • ASEP Coaching Principles, Manheim Central HS, June 2006
  • LTC 509 Communication, Leadership and Decision Making, PSADA Conference, March 2006
  • ASEP Coaching Principles, March 2004, June 2005

Publications

“The Need for High School Extracurricular Activities,” Coach and Athletic Director, November 1, 2008

Volunteer

Volunteer, Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation, 2006-2007
Volunteer, Miami Dolphins Flag Football Camp, 2007 to Present

v. 05/11/22

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