Rick O’Connor has endured a distinguished career that began in the United States Armed Services and has made him a well-traveled man, spanning from the west coast to Eastern Tennessee. He now enters his seventh year with King College as an assistant athletic trainer.
O’Connor began his career in athletic training in 1975 following his honorable discharge from the United States Navy after serving five years as a Hospital Corpsman and Physical/Occupational Therapy Technician. After receiving one year of on-the-job training with Al Esquivel at San Diego City College, he was accepted into the Athletic Training Internship Program at San Diego State University. There, he was privileged to work under NATA Hall of Fame Athletic Trainer, Robert “Bob” Moore.
In February 1980, O’Connor earned his certification as an athletic trainer and graduated with his master’s degree in physical education with emphasis in athletic medicine in May of that same year. Since his graduation, he has been fortunate to enjoy many experiences in the sport and athletic training industry that range from volunteering with the San Diego Clippers basketball team (1978-79) to the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics and 1986 Summer X-Games.
He was employed as a Certified Athletic Trainer at Palomar Community College (1980-81), Carlsbad Physical Therapy (1985-87), Carlsbad High School (1984-92), and El Camino High School (1992-2006) all in North San Diego County, in his native California.
Upon retirement from El Camino High School in 2006, O’Connor enjoyed his retirement for 14 days before becoming the Assistant Athletic Trainer at King. O’Connor is a committee member for the Ethics and Compliance Committee and the Governance Committee for the Tennessee Athletic Trainers’ Society.
O’Connor has been married to Susan Flagle O’Connor for 29 years and enjoy their time with her family that reside in Northeast Tennessee. They have a son, Patrick, who continues to live in Southern California and a daughter, Megan, who graduated from Carson-Newman College in May 2010.