Spring 2015

Hoop Dreams

Erin Grealy's heart remains courtside

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Photo: John Soares

As the compliance officer at the School of Dental Medicine, Erin Grealy guides administrators, faculty, staff and clinicians at One Kneeland through the labyrinthin of government health-care regulations. As an assistant coach at her high school alma mater, Arlington Catholic in Arlington, Massachusetts, Grealy uses some of those same skills to mentor a team of teenage girls on the basketball court.

Grealy was a standout student-athlete in high school—a Catholic Conference MVP and a onetime holder of the Cougars’ record as all-time leading scorer. She went on to play college ball at the University of Maine. Her heart has remained courtside: For the past four years, from November to March, Grealy has returned to Arlington Catholic to help coach and offer the kind of support she says was invaluable to her.

“I had some mentors when I was in high school, and they helped me more than they knew,” she says. “I want to be that person for these girls.”

Coaching has had some personally meaningful moments for Grealy. In 2014, the Cougars won the Division 2 state championship. They got to play on the Boston Celtics’ home court, TD Garden, and Grealy’s father, who had been ill throughout the season (he died last summer) was at that game. “That he was able to see me coaching on the Garden floor, that was pretty amazing,” she says. “I was never able to play there, but coaching the girls there—and having my father well enough to see it—I can’t even describe what that meant to me.” —Helene Ragovin

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