By Rob Potter
ELDRED When the new school year began last week, Kelly Doherty started her seventh year as a teacher in the Eldred Central School District.
But this year Doherty has a new title Athletic Director.
The Eldred Board of Education formally approved Doherty as the district’s new AD at its July meeting. She takes over for Al Wojtaszek, who retired at the end of the 2007-2008 academic year.
“I spend half of my day teaching and the other half performing the athletic director duties,” said Doherty, who, along with colleagues Teresa Colvin and J.J. Gass, teaches physical education and health classes at all grade levels in Eldred.
Doherty noted that she worked with Wojtaszek quite often during the last school year as the hope was that she would become the AD once Wojtaszek retired.
In addition to being a mentor, Wojtaszek has become a good friend for Doherty.
“He’s there if I ever need advice,” she said. “He told me to just give him a call if I ever have a question about this job.”
After graduating from Hancock Central School in Delaware County in 1993, Doherty enrolled at East Stroudsburg (Pa.) University. She earned a bachelor’s degree in health and physical education from ESU in 1999.
Doherty noted that it took a bit longer than the typical four years to receive her bachelor’s because she was originally a business major.
In 2002, she received a master’s degree in adaptive physical education from SUNY Cortland.
Doherty is currently working on a second master’s degree at SUNY New Paltz, which she plans to complete in December.
Doherty, who lives in Monticello, plans on being at Eldred for many years to come.
“I really like it here at Eldred,” she commented. “I like the small-school setting. It reminds me a lot of Hancock. It’s a small school where you get to know everybody on a first-name basis.”
In addition to teaching, Doherty is also a member of the Eldred coaching staff. She has coached the junior varsity softball team for the past five seasons and coached the modified girls’ basketball team last year. Even though the AD responsibilities have added to her already busy schedule, Doherty hopes to continue her coaching career.
“I enjoy coaching, it helps keep the love of sports there,” said Doherty, who played tennis, basketball and softball during her four years at Hancock Central School.
Doherty enjoys the sport of softball in particular.
“Any time I see a softball game on television, I sit down and start watching, especially if the U.S. national team or college teams are playing,” she said.
In fact, one of Doherty’s goals is to someday attend the Women’s College World Series in Oklahoma City, Okla.
For the time being, Doherty is very happy to be teaching, coaching and overseeing the Yellowjacket and Lady Yellowjacket athletic teams.
And she is thankful that she never has to look very far for assistance.
“I have already met a couple of the other ADs here in Sullivan County and they have offered to help,” Doherty commented. “Between those ADs and Al [Wojtaszek], I always have someone to call if I need assistance, which is nice.”