In the sports world, there may be no more classic reason for a head coach to step down than to say they “want to spend more time with family.”
Yet, that rationale, sometimes far from the truth, legitimately led Burroughs High School alumnus Steven Hubbell back to his alma mater as the Burbank High School administrator crossed town and started his first day Tuesday as Burroughs’ new assistant principal in charge of athletics and activities.
Hubbell will be replacing Robyn Anders, who took a position as Burbank Unified’s coordinator of instructional technology.
“I wanted to be in a place where I had the opportunity to be near my kids more,” Hubbell said. “That’s what it was.”
He added, “I missed all of my kids’ away games, and I only caught half of the home games because I was over at Burbank supervising and, when I was there, I was doing everything I could to support our coaches.”
The single father will now have a better chance to watch his oldest son, William, a Burroughs sophomore football and basketball player, while his younger child, Ethan, an eighth-grader at Jordan Middle School, will be arriving on campus next fall.
“I love work, and I’m a good worker, I give 100%, but you also never want to be that deadbeat dad who never watches or supports his kids,” Hubbell said. “I work for them.”
Hubbell attended McKinley Elementary, Jordan and participated in football, basketball and track and field while at Burroughs.
“Steve is the guy who likes to have a face-to-face conversation and work through issues, which is what people respect about him.”
He moved on to the University of California at Davis, where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in aeronautical and mechanical engineering. He also competed in football and track at Davis.
The man who once dreamed of working at Lockheed Corp’s Burbank facility before it closed in the early 1990s was hired by former Burroughs principal Tim Buchanan in 1994 as a physical science teacher. Hubbell was already on campus helping the football team under coach Robert Dos Remedios.
Hubbell has spent time since as a teacher or coach until he was hired to run the district’s summer-school program at Burbank High in 2017.
Since then, Hubbell has climbed the administrator ladder, which led him back to Burroughs.
Although Hubbell is an alumnus and former teacher at Burroughs, his appointment was hardly a slam dunk and he said he’s “earned” his new position.
“I still had to get my three letters of recommendation, do interviews, rewrite my resume and show why I would be an asset to Burroughs,” he said. “When I told one of the interviewers about my history, the person said ‘all that matters is what I can do for Burroughs now.’”
Hubbell said he credits his success at the administrative level to former bosses and colleagues, including one-time Burbank High School principal Michael Bertram and Luther Burbank Middle School principal Oscar Macias.
Although new Burbank High principal Tom Crowther hadn’t spent too much time with Hubbell since taking over in July, he said he was impressed with his work and dedication.
“Steve is a fantastic guy, a good worker and often the first in and the last out,” Crowther said. “In an age where we all fly around a mile a minute, Steve is the guy who likes to have a face-to-face conversation and work through issues, which is what people respect about him.”
As for Burbank High, the now vacant assistant principal position has been advertised internally and externally.
Robin Hatch, a Title I coordinator at Muir Middle School, will be returning to Burbank High to take over the position on an interim basis.