WESTPORT — Westport Police Athletic League (PAL) Athletic Director Carmen Roda has announced that he will retire from his position this spring.

“It was never about the money, championships, or personal praises, but for the kids and their experiences within our programs. “ - Carmen Roda.

Westport Police Athletic League President Ned Batlin thanked Roda for his vision, dedication and service to the PAL during his 9 years as athletic director and 22 total years of coaching. “Carm devoted himself to building a strong, successful athletics program, one that reflects the PAL’s commitment to institutional integrity,” said President Batlin. “Doing that has been his passion and joy, and the PAL community, particularly our student athletes, has benefitted immensely from his care, advice and hard work”.

Roda helped to develop, train and implement concussion protocols for PAL, which were adopted by all Westport Youth Sports, Parks and Recreation, and surrounding towns leading to Westport PAL receiving national recognition. He was featured on CNN with Dr. Sunjay Gupta discussing advancements to make football a safer sport for children.

Roda was co-founder of the Fairfield County Football League. He was a driving force behind Westport installing four turf fields and acquiring lights at Staples High School. As a coach, his football teams won five conference championships. Roda was named Westport Sportsman of the Year in 2007 and was Fairfield County Sportsman of the Year in 2006.

Under Roda’s watch PAL Athletic programs expanded to include Boys and Girls Lacrosse, Minuteman Basketball, Wrestling, Boys and Girls Track and Field, and Flag Football. The PAL has grown to over 2000 participants during his tenure.

Batlin said, “We were very fortunate to have Carm as our AD and are hoping to see him continue to be a part of the PAL community as a member of our Board of Trustees. “

Roda will remain on the job until May to assist with the smooth transition for the new Director of Youth Sports. The Westport PAL will immediately begin a search for a new Athletic Director.