Kaneland tabs retiree trio as interim athletic director
by Stefanie Frazier
KANELAND—Kaneland High School’s search for an interim athletic director has concluded.
Kaneland Superintendent Dr. Jeff Schuler recently announced a “finalized plan” to fill the interim athletics and activities director position for this school year at KHS.
The people set to take on the job include retirees Ross Truemper, Rudy Keller and Ralph Drendel.
According to Erika Schlichter, director of Educational Services 6-12 for the Kaneland School District, the Kaneland School Board is expected to approve the new directors at the board meeting on Dec. 9.
“We ran an interview process,” Schlichter said. “And these candidates rose to the top of the interview process and were selected.”
Truemper and Keller worked at West Aurora High School as co-interim principal for two years and have experience in athletics and activities.
Drendel is a former Kaneland High School assistant athletic director, coach, teacher and student.
Schlichter explained that it is needed to have three interim directors because of limited work days for retirees.
“No one person can work more than 100 days,” Schlichter said. “And so in order to meet our complete dates in this position through the end of the school year, it was necessary to have more than one person. That’s a very common practice.”
The need to fill the position came after former KHS athletic director Leigh Jaffke, who also served as activities director, resigned prior to the Oct. 16 School Board meeting. She had served as athletic director for 14 years.
Meanwhile, Keller said he started to settle in on Monday, with getting his email address and desk situated.
Keller said that he has been treated like “royalty” by Kaneland staff. He has received smiles and well-wishes from staff and students.
“I’m thrilled to be here,” Keller said. “I’m looking forward to a successful winter and spring at Kaneland High School with a highly spirited group of staff and students.”