Living Legend – Mr. P

Colleen McMenamin, Staff Writer


Press Box- Pre Field Hockey Game (Another legend ~ Ms. Wells also pictured)

Some very unlucky people just dream of meeting a hero like Superman. However, the ever lucky Mendham residents do not have to dream of this. We have Mr. Panfile. 

Ned Panifile, or commonly known as Mr. P is the guardian of the Mendham sports world. Best known for his famous pre-season speeches. He presses the importance of sportsmanship, hard work, and determination to all of his athletes. Some of his most renowned slogans are “pick of the shovel and go to work”, “ignore the noise” and the current 2020 season slogan (my personal favorite) which is simply just kicking yourself in the butt to symbolize that you are the only person holding yourself back- inspiration coming from the Teddy Roosevelt quote, “If you could kick the person in the pants responsible for most of your trouble, you wouldn’t sit for a month.” He is accountable for scheduling games, determining field times, and my favorite Mr. P job – giving announcements in the press box during games (which I was almost allowed to do after begging Mr. P for about a month). 

Tired after a long practice …. Mr. P never sleeps

Mr. P constantly stresses the importance of “Mendham Pride”. Being a Mendham resident himself since 1997 and working at Mendham High School for a whopping 36 years he is proud to be Mendham. In these years he taught history (31 years), coached football (31 years), coached baseball (25 years), was the Assistant Athletic Director (11 years), and now has been the Coordinator of the Athletic and Student Activities for the past 5 years. There is no doubt Mr. P has left a lasting legacy on Mendham- which he is not yet done creating. When asked “Why Mendham?” he reflected on the community by responding with “You can’t get better students raised by better families than the ones that are at Mendham High School. My colleagues are some of the best educators I’ve ever come in contact with, as teachers, coaches, and friends.”

He has taught students about good character inside and outside the classroom, on and off the field. We thank Mr. P for his dedication to the Mendham community over the years.