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Schneider to leave St. Joe's to take over as interim executive director of MMHSAA

One job is filled but another suddenly needs filling.

Longtime St. Joe’s Athletic Director and former hockey coach Pete Schneider is stepping down from his post in the spring to take over as interim executive director of the Monsignor Martin High School Athletic Association.

St. Joe’s announced the move Wednesday afternoon.

Schneider will assume duties as MMHSAA interim executive director – including overseeing the more than 15 boys and girls sports, handling public relations for the league and serving as a liaison between the league’s athletic directors and the governing Board of Principals – effective April 1. He will also represent the MMHSAA at meetings with downstate counterparts. He will report to the Board of Principals.

Schneider will stay on as athletic director at St. Joe’s until he takes over full-time executive director duties.

A message left for a member of the Board of Principals, regarding whether Schneider’s appointment will become permanent down the road, has yet to be returned. Still …

“It’s an opportunity for me that at this time I couldn’t pass up,” Schneider said. “It’s an opportunity for me to spend a little bit less time at school all the time. … It’s just the right thing at the right time for me and my family.”

Schneider has been filling in as interim executive director for boys sports since October, when longtime league executive director Brian Kiszewski stepped down from the position. Since then, Schneider and Doug Webster, on the girls side, have been sharing the duties of executive director.

Schneider has been part of St. Joe’s sports programs leadership for 12 years, taking over as athletic director from Greater Buffalo Sports Hall of Famer Joe Wolf in 2008. Being an AD is a challenging job with long hours. Overseeing the Catholic league also is a taxing position but with better hours.

“Pete has worked tirelessly to ensure our athletic program is organized, our coaches and student-athletes are equipped, and our state-of-the-art facilities are well-maintained,” St. Joe’s President Robert T. Scott said in a statement. “It is with mixed emotions that we congratulate him on this new position.”

While Schneider wouldn’t reveal his age, stepping down from the post will give him more time in the future to see his own family – including following the professional hockey career of his son Cole, a Buffalo Sabres prospect currently playing for the Rochester Americans. He also has a daughter who coaches and teaches in Binghamton.

Schneider is quite familiar with the workings of the Monsignor Martin and the New York State Catholic High Schools Athletic Association. He has been a vice president to the executive director of the MMHSAA since 2010 so he’s no stranger to dealing with league or athletic issues. He also has experience dealing with downstate counterparts – including coordinating dates for state Catholic postseason tournaments.

“I think it’ll be good for the league,” Canisius Athletic Director Jim Mauro said. “I think he’ll be an asset to the association moving forward. I’m very pleased he’s taking the job. … He’ll put his own spin on it. He’s very receptive.”

Schneider said he doesn’t have a current assistant athletic director at St. Joe’s. Staying on until spring gives the school ample time to search for a replacement.

It should be an appealing job, considering the league and the success St. Joe’s programs have had over the years. Still, it could be some tough shoes to fill – the school has only had two ADs (Wolf and Schneider) the past 50 years.

“I’m really looking forward to working with the schools, slowing down a little a bit but giving my full attention to the league,” Schneider said.

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