Steve Houghton named to Vermont Principals Hall of Fame

Manchester - Steve Houghton, long time Burr and Burton assistant headmaster, past coach and athletic director, was inducted into the Class of 2013 Vermont Principals' Association Hall of Fame on May 3 in Montpelier. He is one of 12 members of this year's class that have distinguished themselves in school, on the courts, fields, and among their peers. The VPA Hall of Fame is a means of recognizing, preserving and promoting the heritage of interscholastic athletics and activities in Vermont and honors the contributions and accomplishments of those individuals who are worthy of recognition as examples for others to emulate.

Houghton list of accomplishments are those of a person who committed their professional life to serving others throughout his 36-year career in teaching, coaching, and administration. He was also instrumental as an originator of the VPA Hall of Fame in 2001.

"Steve Houghton cared as much about the great state of Vermont as he did about Burr and Burton Academy, and it is great to see him honored in this way," Burr and Burton Headmaster Mark Tashjian said. "For all of Steve's competitive fire, he always cared first about the person, then the scholar, and then the athlete within each of our students. There is nobody more deserving of Hall of Fame recognition than Steve Houghton."

A graduate of Poultney High School and Castleton State College, Steve Houghton began his professional journey in West Rutland in 1976. Steve taught and coached at West Side for five years. He coached the baseball team to a D III State crown in 1981.

Making the journey down Route 7 to Burr and Burton Academy in 1981, Steve turned his talents for motivation and leadership to his work as a school administrator. He served as athletic director for 15 years and as a coach; his women's Bulldog basketball teams earned six league championships and were crowned state champions in 1983 and 1986. Steve was a 4-time Coach of the Year and guided the Vermont Alhambra Girls' Basketball Team in 1986. He helped reinstate football at BBA after a 26-year absence, and assisted in coaching for five years.

In 1988, Steve added the responsibilities of assistant headmaster to those of athletic director. During that time, Steve also served as President of the Marble Valley League and as state director of the Academic Decathlon (1991-1994). He was president of the Central Vermont Girls' Athletic League from 1984 - 1989, and served on several VPA Committees.

Steve relinquished the duties of athletic director at BBA in 1996. Scott Blanchard, Executive Director of the VPA recruited Steve for additional duties for the Association and he served on the Activity Standards Committee from 1999 to 2002 (Chairman, 2000-2002), and the VPA Executive Council from 2003 - 2009. Steve represented Section I to the NFHS Coaches Association from 1998 - 2001, and again served Section I as a member of the NFHS Board of Directors from 2004 - 2008.

Steve earned his Masters degree in Education from UVM (1990). He chaired the Burr and Burton Reaccreditation Committee for NEASC in 1991 and 2001 and was recognized as the Vermont Assistant Principal of the Year by the VPA in 2002.

In 2001, Steve brought a vision to the VPA Executive Council for an event to recognize outstanding Vermont high school athletes, coaches, advisors, and administrators. This vision, and Steve's efforts, led to the formation of the VPA Hall of Fame. Steve's father, Dean, also served on the executive board for the Vermont Principals Association and they are the only father and son to do so. Dean Houghton was inducted into the inaugural VPA Hall of Fame class in 2003. Steve's dad, brother Jeff and Steve are the only father and sons to have won State Championships in Vermont.

"Steve Houghton provided leadership and support to so many students and employees over the years at Burr and Burton," Bulldog Athletic Director Kathi Bierwirth said. "The relationships he developed with students and employees are life-long. He will always be considered as one of the most respected Bulldogs."

Steve Houghton commented, "I am deeply appreciative of the Vermont Principals Association for selecting me, for Kathi Bierwirth for nominating me and for the opportunities Burr and Burton Academy has provided me over the years. Thanks to the teachers and staff and all the students and student athletes I was privileged to work with. It is because of all of them, that I enjoyed the career I had."


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