Pomps’ Life of Commitment & Passion Is Recognized with Hendrickson Award
Dylan Grismer ’22
When someone thinks of a great high school sports coach, a few characteristics immediately come to mind. A great coach is a person who displays extraordinary knowledge of their game, but also goes out of their way to know each of their players personally and teach them life lessons. Perhaps no coach exemplifies these qualities better than Chaminade High School’s own Coach Bob Pomponio.
“Coach Pomps,” as he is more commonly known, epito- mizes what it means to not only be an exceptional coach, but also a fantastic mentor and role model for the young men of Chaminade. Whether you played for him as a member of the junior varsity lacrosse team, had him as your homeroom moderator, learned how to play Speedball from him in gym class, or just had a conversation in the hallways, everyone knows his tremendous character and fun-loving spirit.
Coach began his athletic career at Garden City High School, where he played lacrosse for Chaminade’s current varsity lacrosse head coach, Jack Moran. After high school, he attended Nassau Community College and then Long Island University, where he furthered his knowledge of the game of lacrosse while also earning his bachelor’s degree in health and physical education. Upon graduating from college, Pomps began his teaching and coaching career at Chaminade, where he has remained ever since.
For more than 40 years Coach Pomps has called Chami- nade his home, teaching physical education and coaching both football and lacrosse. He has never failed to put a smile on the face of any of his students or players, and he would do anything to help any one of them.
With that being said, it is no surprise that Coach Pomponio is this year’s recipient of the Whitney Hendrickson Lifetime Achievement Award, which is part of the USA Lacrosse Long Island Metropolitan Hall of Fame. This prestigious award is given to an individual who exemplifies dedication and success in their career, which Coach has certainly done.
Pomps is perhaps best known for how he remembers every one of his players and students. Coach makes it a point to personally get to know every young man on his team or in his class, and he is a pleasure to chat with anywhere around campus. Even Chaminade alumni who played for Coach years ago can come back to campus and talk to him as if they had played for him yesterday. His unwavering compassion and positive attitude have left an impact on thousands of young men who have come through Chaminade, helping them find a home at Chaminade just as he did.
In addition to all the immeasurable good he has done for Chaminade, Pomponio has shown a dedication to his career and community that extends well beyond 340 Jackson Ave.
He is a longtime coach for Long Island Express, a popular and successful club lacrosse program here on Long Island. He is also very active in his home community of Garden City, coach- ing youth lacrosse and helping organize local tournaments.
One of Coach Pomps’s greatest qualities is his humility. Many people would see teaching and coaching as “just a job” but, as Pomps says, “In my over 40 years of coaching and teaching here at Chaminade, I don’t feel like I’ve worked a day in my life.”
Coach’s unwavering dedication to his career and his students are truly his life’s calling, and he does it all with great pride and joy. There is no one more fitting to receive this award than Coach Pomponio, and his steadfast commitment to the young men of this school and his community will only continue to grow.