When Groveland’s David Fudge was asked to be the president of the Pentucket Athletic Association three years ago, he didn’t need very long to answer.
“I’ve always been interested in giving back to the community,” said Fudge, who is retiring after this school year. “I think that is what we should all do. It’s a small community at Pentucket; it’s a proud community, so I wanted to get involved.”
The father of three sons, one of whom graduated in 2012 and one who is currently a Sachem, Fudge has been haunting one athletic field after the other for the past 20 years, coaching Little League, youth soccer and Pentucket youth basketball. Fudge’s predecessor, Larry Fisher, saw something in his nature and asked if he would be willing to take over the PAA presidency in June of 2010. No sooner did Fudge agree than he started his first fundraiser, the Pentucket Pride 5K Road Race.
“I brought much more of a business approach to it,” said Fudge, a quality engineer at the Draper Labs at MIT. “I wanted to put a strategic plan together. What can we do in the next year? Where can we be five years from now? Where do we want to be 10 years from now? So we need to start laying some stones here and building a better foundation for a better PAA. We can always continue to improve our product, and our product is pride.”
An avid runner with eight marathons under his belt, Fudge began with road races, both directly for the PAA and in conjunction with others. He also started a comedy night, bringing in Boston comedians every spring.
“I always said this to my Little League guys: ‘Little things make big things happen,’” said Fudge. “So if we can do little things, if we can do a road race to make some money there, we can push that down to the athletes.”