2016-07-24 / News

St. Charles Community Schools names Leon Larsen new athletic director

By Mandilee Hecht
Staff Reporter

Leon Larsen Leon Larsen ST. CHARLES – Leon Larsen has been named the new athletic director and community center coordinator for St. Charles Community Schools, effective July 1.

The St. Charles resident applied to the position, posted on the district’s website, and was officially hired at the end of June, he said.

He was among four applicants vying for the open position that was vacated after former athletic director Jim Swartzendruber retired at the end of the 2015-16 school year.

Larsen served on the district’s board of education for the last ten years, most recently as board president. He resigned from the board during its last regular meeting June 22.

He decided to pursue a role as athletic director after being a part of STC athletics for many years.

“Having grown up here, I’ve been a part of the athletics for a lot of years. I helped coached my children who went to school here in various spots. Serving on the board was a great experience and I learned a lot… My term was up in December and my plan was not to rerun anyways. I’ve always been interested in St. Charles athletics – it seemed like the right time,” he said.

Larsen started as a youth football coach in 2003, he said. His other athletic experience includes serving in coaching and/or volunteer positions for youth softball and basketball. The last five years he’s served as volunteer for the varsity football program, he said.

Larsen will also serve as community center director. Initial projections had its completion date set for the end of June. The new building now is projected to open at the end of the year.

Larsen will look after day-to-day functions of the facility. Plans are to have it open to the public through lifelong learning classes, fitness activities and adults sport leagues. It will include a fitness center and meeting space, as well as a classroom with technology available.

The addition and the new performance gym can be the setting for weekend athletic tournaments, fundraisers for the programs, and potential MHSAA tournaments, as well as K-12 opening assemblies at the beginning of each school year and the commencement ceremony at school year’s end, Decker told the Citizen previously.

Larsen said he looks forward to his new position that seems to blend two things he’s very passionate about – STC athletics and its community.

“I’ve grown up here and always been a fan of St. Charles athletics and our community. This position of athletic director/ community center coordinator gives me the opportunity to work with both,” he said.

“The St. Charles community along with the schools have always had a great deal of pride and tradition going for them. I look forward to helping continue these great qualities for years to come.”

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