Mr. Darren Howard, Athletic Director at Oswego High School, on Nov. 22, 2019, was elected and now holds the position as the new President-Elect for the Illinois Athletic Directors Association (IADA) for the 2020-2021 school year.
This is a new opportunity for Howard to work on a personal level with all members of sports-related activities within the state of Illinois, no matter the sport or level. As the president of this IADA, he can work towards improving the quality of athletic programs by making important decisions for all athletic departments in the state, working closely with other departments that manage high school level sports.
“The IADA is the Illinois Athletic Directors Association, and they work pretty closely with the IHSA, which is the governing body for all high school athletics in the state. So being in this position allows me to do more than just sit in the seat,” Mr. Howard said.
Steven Udy, a senior who plays for the OHS soccer team is very familiar with Howard’s dedication to Illinois athletics.
“ would always come talk to us during the middle of the soccer season and give us a pep talk,” Udy said.
Although he enjoys the job that he has right now, Mr. Howard wanted to be able to do more for Illinois athletic programs, not only at OHS.
“I wanted to be able to have a voice in what happens in the state with both athletic directors and with high school athletics,” Mr. Howard said.
Athletics are a big part of Mr. Howard’s life and he wants to do whatever he can in his position to keep them running, especially since budget cuts are happening to schools in the state of Illinois.
“Athletics tend to get attacked, especially with budget cuts and things like that so it’s important to be able to have a voice to show people the importance of having not only athletics but activities as well…it’s not just for OHS; It really represents all the schools in the state for the national organization,” Mr. Howard said.
The state of Illinois will be seeing some major changes in the high school athletic programs in the near future. Mr. Howard has already started working to make a change to the way people view and appreciate the athletic programs; changes that leave people excited for the future of athletics in Illinois.
“I am very happy for . He definitely deserves that position and he really loves his job and it shows because he makes an effort to support everybody athletically and around school,” senior and football manager Kala Sundstrom said.
Additional reporting by Tyler Baker.