PLATTSMOUTH – Shaun Brothers has directed the spotlight on Plattsmouth students and faculty members for more than a decade as the school’s activities director.
He was rewarded for that professionalism and service this week with the announcement of a major state award.
Nebraska State Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association members said Monday that Brothers had been selected to receive the group’s State Athletic Director of the Year honor. Brothers will be the 46th person in history to collect the prestigious prize. NSIAAA officials will present the award to him at the organization’s spring banquet in Lincoln March 6.
Praise poured in from many co-workers at Plattsmouth after they learned about the honor. Brothers taught business and coached basketball and football at Plattsmouth before becoming activities director in the summer of 2006. He currently serves as activities director and assistant principal at the high school.
“There are many traits that make Mr. Brothers a great activities director,” Plattsmouth teacher and coach Kevin Tilson said. “He always has the best interest of you and your program at heart. Shaun always works with you for a common goal. He will always ask your opinion about a change in schedule or anything in your program before he makes a switch.
“Probably the one thing that sticks out the most to me is his pursuit to do anything for the activities program. He works tirelessly for all the programs.”
“Shaun has always sincerely cared about students and it is a bonus that he has a passion for athletics and activities,” Plattsmouth teacher and coach Marla Smith said. “He has clear visions and goals for staff and student-athletes. He communicates effectively and believes in our staff.”
“Shaun is a true leader at our high school,” Plattsmouth teacher and coach Chris Wiseman said. “He is a tireless worker that leads by example but he is also a listener when we need guidance within our coaching. His work ethic and pride in being a Plattsmouth Blue Devil is one of the reasons why our facilities have been upgraded.”
“Shaun does a great job of finding the balance between letting us coaches do what we think is best for our program, yet he is always there to offer whatever assistance he can,” Plattsmouth teacher and coach Dan Oatman said. “He has done a great job of setting guidelines for us to follow, then letting us run the ship and turning the program to the coaches.”
Fellow athletic and activities directors across the state also congratulated Brothers on the award. Brothers has served as secretary/treasurer of the Eastern Midlands Conference since 2012 and has appeared at many representative assemblies of the Nebraska School Activities Association.
“Mr. Brothers is very deserving of this award because he devotes his time selflessly to the kids and district of Plattsmouth,” Louisville Activities Director Rob Geise said. “His time and dedication behind the scenes ensures activities run smoothly for the kids.
“In addition, Mr. Brothers is a role model to ADs throughout the state due to his work ethic, character and willingness to help. He has dedicated many, many years to helping and serving others and is very deserving of this award. Plattsmouth High School and the Plattsmouth community are lucky to have him.”
“Shaun has always been a person that I reach out to for his guidance and direction,” Waverly Activities Director Brad McMillan said. “He is always willing to listen and talk through any situation we might have. The support and innovation he has created at Plattsmouth High School speaks volumes of his character and wanting what is best for kids and the community he serves.”
NSIAAA State Athletic Director of the Year recipients are required to have served a minimum of eight years as an athletic administrator in Nebraska. They must also be recognized in their community as an educational leader and must have made a significant impact on the lives of students. Nominees must also have improved the social and cultural environment at their school through their work with athletics and activities.
Bennington Activities Director Greg Lamberty said he believes Brothers has accomplished those feats through his communication and planning skills. He said Brothers has helped the EMC remain a successful league through his work with finances, history, recordkeeping and website organization.
Lamberty said he has also admired the work Brothers has done with the Plattsmouth Activities Complex for Kids project. The endeavor created a new field turf surface at Blue Devil Stadium and new baseball diamond. It also helped the school upgrade its softball and track and field facilities.
“Just my personal opinion, but the facilities at PHS don’t happen without Shaun – specifically the field turf on the stadium and baseball field and the development of the softball field,” Lamberty said. “He’s been the driving force for the athletic programs at Plattsmouth in terms of developing resources to help keep the teams there competitive in a resource-rich conference.”
Brothers is responsible for leading the entire Plattsmouth athletics and activities departments. He schedules games and events for freshman, junior varsity and varsity teams and hires officials for all activities.
He also sets up and takes down equipment before and after games, handles disciplinary issues with athletes and communicates with coaches about any issues that may have come up. This includes answering questions about basic items such as schedules and uniform purchases and more complex issues like conflict management.
“There is no question that professionally when I have a problem Shaun is one of my mentors that I go to for advice,” Wiseman said. “His expertise and experience are great assets for our coaching staff. He usually starts off by saying, ‘I don’t know everything but this is what I would do…’”
“He makes sure all of the little things are getting done so the coaches do not have to worry about it,” Oatman said. “He takes care of many things from scheduling events, finding workers, coming up with a Plan B when a hoop breaks, all the way down to making sure the medals, awards, donuts and meals arrive on time. He does this not just for a favorite program, but across all programs.”
Lamberty said Brothers showcased his professionalism last Friday when a basketball hoop, backboard and pole became dislodged after a player dunked in warmups before a home game with Bennington. Instead of becoming agitated or angry, Lamberty said Brothers chose to focus on a solution to the problem instead.
“We found a side door, went over the options on the table, talked through it, brought in the coaches, presented the plan and moved the boys game over to Plattsmouth Community Middle School,” Lamberty said. “We were up and running over there in 45 minutes, and by the end of the night Shaun had a company in the high school gym inspecting the hoop and brackets that had busted.”
The State Athletic Director of the Year honor will be the latest award Brothers has earned for his work at Plattsmouth. The Nebraska Association of Student Councils selected him for the NASC Administrator of the Year Award in 2015. He also earned the Nebraska State Bandmasters Association’s Outstanding Administrator Award in 2015 and the NSIAAA District II Athletic Director of the Year Award in 2016.
Smith said the awards are one way of showcasing the important role Brothers has played in the Plattsmouth district. She said his oversight of PHS programs has benefited hundreds of students and fellow staff members over the years.
“Shaun’s leadership is outstanding,” Smith said. “He leads by example with tact and professionalism. Ultimately he takes pride in what he does every day and wants to make Plattsmouth a better place daily.”