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After four years in charge of sports at North Hardin, James Slaven is looking for a new challenge.
Slaven resigned Monday from his post as athletic director, turning in his letter of resignation to Principal Lonnie Dennis and also emailing a copy to the central office for Hardin County Schools.
Slaven said he started texting and calling coaches to let them know of his departure after meeting with Dennis at 7:30 a.m.
Slaven does plan to stay in the area and go back to his teaching roots – he has degrees in math and social studies from Eastern Kentucky University – but it will not be at North Hardin, where he has spent the 10 previous school years.
“I guess the hardest thing about leaving is the memories of some things that happened there,” Slaven said. “To be honest right now, there’s not a lot that would keep me there.
However, Slaven’s wife Lisa will remain at North Hardin, where she is the department chair for family and consumer sciences.
“I have a really close relationship with four or five of our coaches and I talked to them today and that might have been the hardest part,” Slaven said. “But outside of that, it’s a different place now than it was two years ago. I feel like it’s just time for me to move on.”
Prior to replacing Alan Campbell as athletic director, Slaven had a successful stint as North Hardin’s girls’ basketball coach.
“I learned that I don’t miss coaching like I thought I would,” Slaven said. “Being an AD really gave me enough of a taste of it, going through the fall, winter and then spring seasons. I don’t miss coaching a lot, because I still got to be involved with the coaches and I still got to be involved with the kids.”
Slaven does not plan to leave sports entirely behind, though.
“Wherever I end up, I’d like to stay involved in athletics at the administrative level and helping out with anything that anybody needs,” Slaven said.
Slaven thanked former North Hardin principal Bill Dennison for giving him three chances – first as a teacher, then as a coach, then as an AD.
“He hired me in all three,” Slaven said. “He’s been my mentor and I’m pretty thankful to have spent nine of my years there with him. That was probably the highlight.”
Slaven’s departure is the latest in a long line of changes for area high school athletics. Of the seven public high schools in the tri-county area, four will have new ADs this coming school year.
Slaven resigned, John Hardin’s Greg Cecil was named Hart County principal, Elizabethtown’s Doug Barnes retired and Meade County’s John Proctor retired.
Boys’ basketball coach James Haire and girls’ basketball coach Tim Mudd are serving as co-interim ADs at Elizabethtown, while Austin Jones was hired at John Hardin and baseball coach Todd Clanton was hired at Meade County.
Nathaniel Bryan can be reached at (270) 505-1758 or email@example.com.