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Susquehannock AD Chuck Abbott is new YAIAA executive director

Chuck Abbott is coming up on a full month since taking on another job title.

He already has been Susquehannock athletic director for 15-plus years and the YAIAA's lacrosse chairman since the sport's introduction in 2009. Why not add another title? Maybe YAIAA executive director?

Abbott said to himself, "Why not?" when he applied for the part in June.

"It is a challenge, and I look forward to it," said Abbott, who will get busier in the next month.

Fall practices begin Aug. 17. When they do, he will oversee more than just the athletic programs at Susquehannock. Abbott said he will remain as the school's athletic director, a job neither George Shue nor Herb Schmidt held during their tenures atop the league.

Shue officially took over for Schmidt in 2010, but resigned in June and has since taken over as president of the Pennsylvania Scholastic Football Coaches Association. Schmidt served as YAIAA executive director for more than 20 years and remains a consultant for the league. Schmidt also is a fixture at some YAIAA events.

In a way, Abbott already oversees a few.

Susquehannock plays host to multiple league championships, including boys' and girls' soccer and boys' and girls' lacrosse. That wasn't lost on the YAIAA's executive board, West York principal Janet May said.

"He's been there for a while, so he has this wealth of knowledge and experience," May said. "But it's also the way he handles himself. He takes care of anything you ask him to take care of."

May, who serves as executive board president, added that Abbott was a unanimous selection by the board when it met in late June. About a dozen applied and four or five interviewed, she said. The board then submitted Abbott for approval by the YAIAA, which gives each of the 23 member schools one vote — decided by athletic director or principal.

Abbott moved to the area from Philipsburg in 1981 to become an eighth-grade science teacher in the Southern York County School District. He coached 22 years of baseball and seven of football.

"I've been around," he said. "I guess I'm one of those old fossils, I don't know."

Kidding aside, May said Abbott's respect from other athletic directors and principals became a driving force. Even Wednesday night, former West York athletic director Roger Czerwinski cited Abbott as a colleague he will miss as he begins the same job at Manheim Township in the Lancaster-Lebanon League.

While Abbott said he plans to remain as Susquehannock's athletic director, he is unsure if he will remain league lacrosse chairman. When he began at Susquehannock, teaching science and a little driver's ed on the side, he couldn't imagine it would turn into this.

"I always knew I wanted to be a teacher and coach, or athletic director," he said. "This just seemed like the next step. It's been a great ride. Wouldn't trade it for anything."

Contact Matt Goul at 771-2045.