ATTLEBORO — A member of three athletic teams and captain of the football and lacrosse teams, William Runey III was selected as the MIAA’s Student-Athlete of the Month for December.
Runey, a senior at Attleboro High School, was nominated by Bombardier Athletic Director Mark Houle, who stated, “Throughout William’s four years at AHS, he has continually been a leader within our school and community. He has led community-service projects and balanced a vigorous academic record while participating in three sports. We are proud of his efforts as a student-athlete.”
Runey is a member of Attleboro High’s National and Spanish Honor Societies and is the son of AHS Principal Bill Runey. The MIAA Student-Athlete of the Month Award is presented on a monthly basis to two student-athletes who display excellence in the areas of academics, athletics and community service.
Runey’s dad said with Bombardier pride, “William’s success as a student-athlete is a testament to how our Blue Pride Community fosters this type of personal growth in all of our students, where our ultimate goal is to prepare our students to better our world.”
Runey’s academic workload includes both Advanced Placement and Honors-level classes, achieving an overall combined “A” grade in his studies.
AHS football coach Mike Strachan said that “William exhibits impeccable character and citizenship in both the school community and the Attleboro community at large.”
Runey’s strong work ethic, his active participation and academic excellence, his versatility, and his energy and focus while working both independently and in groups is a special trait, according to AHS Math Department faculty member Sally Eosefow. “One of William’s most impressive traits is his ability to communicate.”
Kevin Patton, the AHS boys’ lacrosse coach, mentioned that “from the moment William stepped on the lacrosse field as a freshman, he was ready to lead.”
Runey is a recipient of the 2020 Heisman High School Scholar, which is a national recognition for the “most esteemed male and female high school seniors who understand that the most important victories not only happen on the field, but in their schools and communities.”
In the classroom, Runey “has been genuinely and enthusiastically engaged on a path of discovery and growth,” said his Philosophy teacher, Louise Michelle. “I am so impressed by his curiosity and openness with respect to new ideas and different perspectives.”
As a sophomore, Runey and members of the community teamed up to gather items for her “Supply Sacks” program. In his junior year at AHS, Runey helped establish the “Pride Pantry,” a confidential pantry for students in need of food, clothing and toiletries. His school supply drive provided backpacks for the “Pride Pantry” as well as the “Supply Sacks” program.
Jill Fitzgerald, an AHS Health and Physical Education teacher, said Runey “takes great pride in his leadership role within his classes and serves as a model student-athlete for the school community to follow. A servant to his community, William either led or has been involved in numerous community-service initiatives and leadership roles.”
Runey is a member of the AHS School Council and AHS Student Council. He served as Junior Class Secretary and was a School Committee Delegate. Runey was chosen to represent Attleboro High at MassStar, a youth leadership experience, as a delegate his sophomore year and as a counselor his junior year.
In addition, Runey was named Attleboro High’s representative at Boys State, another leadership program. He has also been a Southeastern Regional Student Advisory Council delegate during for the past two years.
Even before entering Attleboro High, Runey coordinated a service project to support his required Summer Reading Experience via a School Supplies Drive for the less fortunate in collaboration with members of the Bombardier football team. This project caught the attention of State Representative Elizabeth Poirier, who reached out to him and asked if his project could enhance her “Supply Sacks” initiative that supports students in group homes in need of school supplies and other basic essentials.
Runey’s English instructor, James Clarke, stated the obvious: “William Runey III is a tremendous student-athlete who is kind, compassionate, talented, diligent, mature, and goal-oriented.”