Seaver Peters, former Dartmouth College athletic director, dies

  • Seaver Peters captained the Dartmouth College men's hockey team during the 1953-54 season and served as the school's athletic director from 1967-83.

Valley News Staff Writer
Published: 2/23/2020 10:03:45 PM
Modified: 2/23/2020 10:03:42 PM

Seaver Peters, Dartmouth College’s athletic director from 1967-83, died Sunday, an athletic department spokesperson confirmed via email. His son, Scott Peters, also posted the news via social media.

Seaver Peters was a Big Green men’s hockey captain before his 1954 graduation and was long active in the Upper Valley’s flourishing youth hockey scene.

Peters’ legacy is multi-faceted but topped by his successful push for the building of Rupert C. Thompson Arena during the mid-1970s. Dartmouth went from having one of the worst college hockey facilities in 45-year-old Davis Rink, to having an iconic arena whose cement architecture has stood the test of time.

A Melrose, Mass., native born in 1932, Peters played high school hockey for future University of New Hampshire coaching legend and 1946 Dartmouth graduate Charlie Holt. Peters skated for an undefeated Big Green freshman team and later became the varsity’s first-line center during three campaigns under famed coach Eddie Jeremiah.

After a stint in the military, Peters returned to Hanover in 1959 and worked as the college’s assistant comptroller and assistant athletic director.

He and another former Dartmouth hockey player, Ab Oakes, founded the Hanover Youth Hockey Association during the 1960s, and Peters was its president for 17 consecutive years.

The Friends of Dartmouth Hockey was another Peters creation, founded in 1976. He also served as chairman of the ECAC Playoff Selection Committee during that decade, and was at the athletic department’s helm when its women’s hockey program was created and when the men’s team reached the 1979 and 1980 national semifinals.

Upon retiring from Dartmouth, Peters worked in finance.

He was involved in the planning, fundraising and building of West Lebanon’s Campion Rink, which opened in 1988 and continues to house local hockey and skating groups.

Peters, who had six children and eight grandchildren, had resided in a Lebanon assisted-living complex in recent years.

He was a frequent sight for Dartmouth men’s hockey games at Thompson Arena, sitting near center ice beneath the press box and often being assisted to and from his seats by his children.

Tris Wykes can be reached at

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