Norfolk Academy Teacher-Coach Neil Duffy is featured in a new book, 30 Days with America's High School Coaches, which highlights a select group of coaches who have found success using imagination and a strong internal compass to shape student-athletes.
The book, written by Martin Davis, was released on January 25, 2022. It highlights 30 coaches, chosen from throughout the nation, describing how they build athletes’ hearts, minds, and bodies to form successful teams, strong individuals, and future leaders.
Mr. Duffy came to Academy in 1994. In addition to teaching Upper School Physics and advising the school's Military Appreciation Club - he is a United States Naval Academy graduate and served as a naval officer for five years - he is head coach for the Bulldogs' varsity girls basketball team and an assistant varsity lacrosse coach.
In 2019, Mr. Duffy won the USA Lacrosse Gerald J. Carroll Exemplary Coaching Award, who goes annually to only one coach in the entire nation.
Among the highlights of the girls basketball season is Someone Special Night, a tradition of honoring those who have positively influenced the student-athletes. The lacrosse program holds a similar event, Play To Honor. Both these events are referenced in the book.
As the author states, Coach Duffy “has spent a lifetime thinking about and working to teach the simple act of gratitude."
“Now, in a world obsessed with social media and self-promotion, Duffy is teaching others to take some time, and thank someone publicly for helping them on their journey toward success," Davis writes. “Duffy hopes that his students will take that lesson into the world with them and share it with others."