By Andy Loigu
After joining the district in 1993 as a health and physical education teacher, coaching three sports, advising several clubs and serving as president and vice president of the Warren Hills Regional Education Association, Geri McKelvey is now in charge of the Blue Streaks’ interscholastic athletics programs.
She was appointed the new Director of Athletics and Student Activities at Warren Hills Regional High School effective July 1.
McKelvey is the district’s third athletics director since 2013, following Bob Lockhart and Peter Lubrecht.
After a 30-year connection as a student-athlete, coach, and administrator, Lockhart left Warren Hills for Summit High School.
In an Express-Times interview, he indicated that at Warren Hills he simultaneously had duties as the head of all extracurricular activities, oversaw teacher observations, and put together complete Middle School and High School schedules, in addition to the paperwork involved in running the athletics program.
“It was a busy day,” Lockhart said. “I was being pulled in a lot of directions.” He indicated he went to Summit “to just be an AD.”
“I look forward to watching the passion evolve here at Warren Hills in the classrooms, on the stages, courts, and playing fields,” McKelvey stated in a press release from the school district. “Working with dedicated faculty, students, and administration will allow me to provide the best opportunities for all students,” she added.
“I am very excited to be able to carry on the Blue Streak pride and continue to be part of the Warren Hills educational community. My goal is to foster great opportunities for all students and empower them to reach their full potential. Students find their true passion when they participate in extra-curricular activities.”
In a statement, Board of Education President Richard Havrisko said the Board is confident McKelvey is a capable, knowledgeable, and dedicated professional. She ”will continue to improve our learning environment and provide outstanding co-curricular opportunities to all our students,” he added.
McKelvey is a 1992 graduate of East Stroudsburg University.
Summer wrestlers are winter winners
The 79th Warren County Farmers’ Fair will get started on Saturday, July 30, with a wrestling tournament sponsored by the Warren Hills Wrestling Club.
The wrestling starts at 8 a.m. and runs through 6 p.m. Since Warren Hills, Phillipsburg, and Blair Academy have scholastic wrestling programs with longstanding traditions for excellence and success, the tournament has drawn competitors from other parts of New Jersey and out-of-state, who want to be tested against quality competition.
Although the wrestling starts early, most vendor booths, commercial buildings and other fair attractions will not open until noon.
From the archives: Where are they now?
Former Hackettstown Tigers running back and defensive safety AJ Tatarka is now working as a sales executive for the Miami Marlins baseball team, which has a winning record and is in playoff contention in the National League.
AJ creates customized fan experiences and lifelong memories for group outings of South Florida businesspeople at Marlins games in the team’s modern, new state-of-the-art stadium. He handles season tickets, suites, and hospitality.
He graduated in 2012 from Coastal Carolina University (this year’s College Baseball World Series champs) with a bachelor’s degree in marketing.
At Hackettstown he was an important member of a Tigers’ team with a winning record that made the North 2 Section 2 playoffs to finish the 2008 football season under coach Tony Villante. In a win against Voorhees he carried the ball 44 times.
Harlin Jeffries and I had a blast broadcasting Tiger games on local radio that fall. AJ was nicknamed “The Tank” while fullback Pat Trucksess was nicknamed “The Truck,” and speedy tailback Auxence Wogou was dubbed “The Diesel.”
In my role as “expert analyst” I often was asked, between plays, what Hackettstown should do next. My reply in short yardage situations would usually be, “just say AJ.”
Ladies and gentlemen, Elvis has left the building.