To celebrate her dedication and hard work, Chris Collins, athletic department stalwart, will be inducted into Harker’s Athletic Hall of Fame this Saturday before the Homecoming game. Collins started with Harker in 2001 as assistant to the dean of students and the athletic director. After a brief hiatus in 2004, she returned to support the academic dean in 2005 and, in 2007, again added support for the upper school athletic director to her duties. In 2008 Collins moved exclusively to the athletic department. Seven busy years later, in December 2015, much to her regret, Collins had to leave Harker due to several serious health issues, and her loss was deeply felt.
“Chris is a true Eagle,” said Dan Molin, the upper school athletic director since 2005. “She gave her heart and soul to Harker, and the kids and coaches. Her behind-the-scenes work was a major reason for our and our students’ success over the years of her tenure. She was very responsive and responsible. She did everything for us, and would never leave a task undone.”
Collins held down a desk in the main academic hall before the new athletic center was built, and was accessible to anyone passing by. “Chris is very caring; she has a very maternal aura about her and that reflected very positively,” added Molin. “People gravitated to her and people trusted her. The athletic office can be quite busy at times, but she would always stop what she was doing to answer any question from an athlete, coach, parent or teacher, making them aware that their question was of the utmost importance and deserved her undivided attention.”
Over and above her regular duties, “Chris also, on her own, took on the task of selling athletic logo wear at football games and other big events we hosted,” Molin said. “She would lug all the boxes out there with a cart and set up a little logo wear table at football games on Friday nights. That is something she didn’t have to do; she just did it to get the spirit wear out there. She was always at games, always supporting the kids.”
Collins noted she loved giving out uniforms to the kids at the beginning of each season and seeing how excited they were when they received their uniforms. Another high point was getting flowers for seniors and their parents on each sport’s Senior Day.
“I was surprised and very happy to be selected to the Harker Athletic Hall of Fame,” said Collins. “To be given this honor for doing a job I truly loved is a blessing. Dan Molin was a fantastic boss. I felt like Dan and I were a wonderful team and I hope I helped him as much as he helped me! I loved the whole Harker family, administrators, teachers and the kids who made it an awesome place to work and I miss everyone so much!”
Molin noted Collins brought calm to the busy athletics office throughout her time at Harker. “She never got rattled, no matter how crazy and hectic things could get,” he concluded. “She was always very even-keeled about things – the calm in the eye of the storm. She cared for and loved the kids and enjoyed seeing them compete. She’s phenomenal.”
Founded in 2018, The Harker School Athletic Hall of Fame honors those who have made outstanding contributions to its athletic program. Candidates for selection exemplified desirable character traits during their years at Harker and beyond, and have distinguished themselves in competition representing Harker, their college or at the professional level. Candidates may also be non-graduates who, through long service to Harker, have distinguished themselves in the field of athletics.