Featured Alumnus: Mark Naclerio ’11
Associate Director of Admission & Associate Head Coach, Varsity Hockey at Avon Old Farms
Mark Naclerio ’11 grew up in Milford, CT, and was a four-year boy at Avon Old Farms. At Avon he was a member of the chorale all four years, was head monitor of Elephant 3 his senior year, and was a three-year member of the varsity hockey teams, winning the New England Championship in 2010 and serving as the team captain his senior year. He was a Yale Book Award winner and a member of the Order of Old Farms.
After graduation he matriculated to Brown University where he majored in business, entrepreneurship, and organizations and was a two-time captain on the men’s Division 1 hockey team. Mark had the opportunity to play professionally both in the U.S. and overseas. He says his experiences playing abroad allowed his wife and he to live in both Austria and Italy, as well as travel to various European countries. “Hockey has taken me all over the world and is a true passion of mine,” he says.
After his professional hockey career ended, Mark began working in a corporate job at NBC sports. “Although I enjoyed the experience, it was clear to me that I was not fulfilled or passionate about the work I was doing. I decided to pursue a career in coaching to have a part in developing young men and help them pursue their dreams.”
The first opportunity to coach arose at South Kent school in 2020. Mark took the position, excited to be back in the world of hockey. He says he was happy there and was not actively looking, but when a call came from John Gardner this past summer, Mark says it was the call he’d been waiting for.
“My wife, Paige, and I had always discussed a job at Avon and moving back to this area. I knew it was a goal of mine to get back here, but there were not any positions available, so I cheered on Avon from afar, rooting for the coaching staff and all the players involved. When a position did open up and I got the call, everything just fell into place.” He now serves as the associate director of admissions, as well as associate head coach of the varsity hockey team he was once a part of.
“I wanted to work at Avon Old Farms so I can give back to a place that gave me so much. It's a second home to me and it played an integral part of my development as a young boy and helped shape me into the man I am today. It’s different being on the other side of things now, but it really helps me to relate with students and prospective families when I can share that I am an alumnus of the school.”
In the Admissions Office, Mark works with a large portion of student applicants interested in pursuing an excellent education, as well as a well-rounded high school experience. This allows him the opportunity to meet prospective students and create meaningful relationships. In the rink, he helps coach the varsity hockey team and assists in the development of the students as both people and players. In addition, he serves as a student advisor to six new students.
“I was fortunate enough to spend four years at Avon Old Farms. It helped shape me into the man I am today by teaching me valuable lessons of hard work, time management, independence and how to aspire and persevere. It is truly a special place that I am now fortunate enough to share with my family.”
Mark and Paige live in Simsbury with their son, Christopher, and another son is expected in November.