MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WKRG) – AHSAA executive director Steve Savarese announced his retirement Wednesday at the Central Board’s meeting in Montgomery.
Savarese took over as the executive director of the AHSAA in 2007 after serving as a high school coach and teacher for more than 40 years. He coached Daphne to the 6A State Championship in 2001 and later served as the head coach at McGill-Toolen. Savarese was inducted into the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame in 2010 and the ASHOF in 2019.
As the executive director of the AHSAA, Savarese also spent time on the NFHS Board of Directors and other national committees. Last year, he was elected by the NFHS Board of Directors to the position of president-elect for the 2021 school year.
The AHSAA is in the best financial shape of it’s 100-year history under Savarese’s leadership. While leading high school athletics in Alabama, Savarese developed a revenue-sharing program that has returned more than $17 million to member schools since its implementation in 2010. According to the AHSAA, another $1.5 million is expected to be paid out during the 2021 school year, bringing the total to nearly $19 million, despite the challenges of the COVID-19 Pandemic.
In 2009, Savarese moved the Super 7 football championships to Alabama’s Bryant-Denny Stadium and Auburn’s Jordan-Hare Stadium on a rotating basis. He also overlooked the addition of Birmingham’s new Progressive Stadium to the rotation, which is set to begin in fall 2021. Working with cities across the state, Savarese has expanded neutral sites for all 26 championship sport playoff experiences.