September 4th, 2012

Elementary Excellence: St. Martha

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Conor Revell

Managing Editor

Elementary Excellence: St. Martha
from Ackermann

A lot of good changes are being made at St. Martha

The following feature is a part of a weekly series called "Elementary Excellence" - a set of profiles that will spotlight Louisville area Catholic elementary schools and its athletic programs, teams, traditions and excellence in all aspects of sports. Do you want your school to be featured? Send us your recommendation to

There are some new faces in the St. Martha athletic department for the 2012-2013 school year. Amy Ackermann, the St. Martha girl’s Athletic Director, talked about the changes, additions at St. Martha as well as the goals for their athletic teams.

“Our goal is to provide as many sports as we can to all St. Martha students who want to participate,” said Ackermann.

Like any school, people are going to come and go as the community continues to evolve.

“Our former booster president, Dave Arnold, had done a fabulous job during his years here. His daughter is graduating in the spring and he is passing his duties on to our new president, Joe Burns,” said Ackermann. “Burns has taken on his new position with lots of energy and is meeting as many parents as he can. Lisa Clark, our secretary is our go-to person; she knows everything because she does it all. I’m not sure what we would do without her.”

“We also have a new priest, Father Hamilton who has made huge improvements to our parish in the short time he has been here,” said Ackermann. “He has jumped in and got involved in all the school activities, sporting events, and committees. We love his excitement and his interaction with the whole parish.”

St. Martha added field hockey last year and began offerings sports to students that are in Kindergarten through 2nd grades.

“This past year the CSAA added 3rd/4th grade field hockey. Our coach, Angie Palmer, played at Assumption and U of L so she knows the game inside and out,” said Ackermann. “She taught the girls fundamentals, teamwork and the whole concept of the game in 5 weeks. She is an amazing coach, we are lucky to have her.”

“There was nothing for the little ones when I became athletic director. I kept hearing about leagues at other schools and started inquiring about them,” Ackermann noted. “I took each sport and told the community that we were going to have our own teams. It grew like wildfire and we now have three flag football, four soccer, and three volleyball teams along with 50-60 kids who attended our weekly basketball clinic. I couldn't have made this happen without the help of the younger parents who stepped up to coach or help out.”

The Shamrocks have a history of winning and this year’s 8th graders have continued that tradition.

“A lot of teams have stood out at St. Martha. Our graduating class has been city champs and runners-up in volleyball, basketball, baseball, field hockey and track,” said Ackermann. “They are a very talented group of kids who get along and worked hard to get to where they are today. We are going to miss them when they graduate; they have been a fun group to watch.”

Kids grow and move out of their childhood neighborhood but many have chosen to stay at St. Martha.

“We are special because we have a ton of parishioners whose kids graduated but have stayed involved with our parish activities and are teaching the younger parishioners the ropes,” said Ackermann. “Many of our current parishioners graduated from St. Martha and decided to raise their families here. Our younger parishioners have a lot of energy and new ideas. I have no doubt that St. Martha will continue to thrive in the years to come and stay the great parish we are today.”

Although Ackermann is the leader of the St. Martha athletic department, it is the St. Martha parish community that allows this type of growth and student involvement to happen. With so much success among the school's teams, Ackermann recognizes how important a part the parent community and the parish plays in the development of the student-athlete at St. Martha's.

“Mike Ellison, our Boys AD, and I are a small part of the whole picture. We work hard but we couldn't do it without the help of our booster committee, field manager, crew, parents, priest, and school facility,” said Ackermann. “It is a total team effort. Booster families work the concession stand during all sporting events and we have league coordinators that run our summer adult leagues that make money for us. We also have a fantastic picnic and Marthagras committee who work countless hours to make these fundraisers a huge success."



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