By Emma Gibson
Many students in Whiteland Community High School participate in sports, but they may not know who puts everything together as well as who ensures everything is provided for the athletic events. The face of Athletics is Director Ken Sears, who has been working in the Clark Pleasant School Corporation for almost 24 years.
Assistant athletic director Todd Croy originally started teaching at Clinton Central High School, as well as working at the old middle school, now known as Grassy Creek Elementary. After teaching for 30 years, he began his career as an assistant athletic director at Whiteland.
Sears began teaching after being in the business world for 12 years prior to college. Both athletic directors coached football for many years as well as being teachers in our district.
For Sears, there are many different elements that are a part of the job, including hiring coaches, making sure athletes have their needed physicals, coaches are trained, parents are met with and more.
“The athletic director should be the one who gets our teams what they need to be successful, so my job is to make sure we have enough money to get the things we need to help our student athletes be successful and whatever that is, that’s my main goal, to be the person that lets our student athletes be successful,” Sears said.
Croy’s job as the assistant athletic director is to get needed sponsors for athletic events, keep social media up to date, have everything ready for concessions and much more.
“I go to events, I cover events, I set up football games, to swim meets, to track meets, to softball games, so I get to watch a lot of athletics, so it’s kind of something that’s always been a passion of mine,” Croy said.
Unlike other jobs, athletic directors have an exceptionally diverse work day. Croy and Sears still have meetings, but overall there is a lot of maintenance to be put into the athletic facilities.
Track and wrestling coach Michael Hand works with the athletic directors, and as a coach, he communicates and gains knowledge from the athletic directors on how he can better his athletes. He also learns how to ensure his team as a whole can be the best they can be.
“Having been former coaches, both athletic directors are able to give assistance and/or recommendations when difficult or unusual issues arise. Both are very supportive of the programs and ensure that our facilities are kept up to date so that coaches and athletes have the means necessary to achieve a high level of success,” Hand said.
Sears stated that his favorite part of being an athletic director is working with young coaches and watching the coaches as well as their student athletes develop through the years, and seeing athletes go from being freshman to seniors.
“My favorite part of being an athletic director is working with coaches, young coaches as they learn and try to impart what little wisdom I have on how to handle situations and watch them grow. I also like watching kids develop from the time they’re a freshman to the time they’re seniors leaving here as great young adults,” Sears said.
Sears and Croy work hard every day to ensure that Whiteland’s athletics remain professional and all facilities are maintained so that coaches and athletes can participate in the sports they love.