Worcester Rugby Star Lavigne Named 2018 Person of the Year
Wednesday, August 08, 2018
"Mark has been a passionate and committed volunteer for the Foundation. He has doggedly worked as a volunteer to coordinate our fundraising day in and day out and through the donations he has helped gather has built the footing on which our Foundation operates. Without his strong leadership and work, we would simply not be in the position we are today and therefore not able to impact the people we do,” said Jeff Turgeon, the Worcester Sports Foundation’s Director.
Lavigne graduated from Northbridge High School in 1977 where he played football and track.
He was the captain of the school’s track team his senior year and still holds the school record in pole vault at 11 feet.
He went on to the University of Rhode Island where he began playing rugby during his junior year. He also played two seasons of rugby as at Framingham State before joining the Worcester Men’s Rugby Club in the spring of 1984.
On the rugby field, Lavigne made an impressive run of success, having made the top squad after four games and keeping his spot until he was 39.
As a Worcester rugby standout, Lavigne played in the Club’s first USA Rugby National Sweet 16 and Final 4 appearances in 1998.
Following an injury and retirement, he came back to play for the Club’s first side at the age of 45 and then transitioned to the newly formed Worcester Faded Blacks over 35 squad, where he had remained a steady fixture on the field until 2016.
He has been an active administrator for the Club and Foundation for more than a decade, including managing the Foundation’s key relationship with the DCU Center following the untimely passing of Phil Callahan in 2008. Through Lavigne’s efforts, the Foundation has raised more than $60,000 during his tenure.
Lavigne was inducted into the Worcester Men’s Rugby Club Hall of Fame in 2009 was named the Club’s Ironman Award recipient in 2004 and their Man of the Year in 2013.
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