Urhahn to be new MSHSAA executive director

Friday, November 18, 2005

The Oran graduate Kerwin Urhahn will replace existing director Becky Oakes.

The new executive director of the Missouri State High School Activities Association has strong ties to Southeast Missouri.

Kerwin Urhahn, currently the superintendent of the Portageville School District, was announced Thursday as the successor to Becky Oakes.

The MSHSAA board of directors made the announcement, with Urhahn's start date set for July 1.

Oakes, who has been the executive director for 14 years, will retire Feb. 1.

"I want to see MSHSAA as a user-friendly and approachable organization by its membership," Urhahn said in a press release. "I want schools to know we're here for them to assist in advancing programs at the local level, that we provide services to assist them."

Urhahn, 38, who represents the Southeast district on the board of directors, is a graduate of Oran High School. He lettered in basketball and baseball at Oran and continued his studies at Southeast Missouri State.

He received a bachelor's degree from Southeast in 1990 and a master's degree from the university in 1996. He received an education specialist designation in 2000 from St. Louis University, where he has been pursuing an educational doctorate since 1998.

Urhahn was a teacher and coached four sports from 1991 to 1997 at Bloomfield High School. He became assistant to the principal and athletic director at Bloomfield in 1994 and was named principal in 1997. He became superintendent at Portageville in 2000.

Urhahn coaches a USA volleyball club team and plays golf and fast-pitch softball.

He serves on the Missouri Association of School Administrators state accountability committee and the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education MSIP performance committee.

He served on the MSHSAA Southeast investigative committee from 1998 to 2001. He was elected as the Southeast representative on the MSHSAA board of directors in 2003.

"I have had the opportunity to work with Kerwin throughout his professional career and know he is a person of character, enthusiasm and genuine care for students," Oakes said. "His outstanding leadership and his passion for activities and athletics in our schools will make him a great person for this position."

MSHSAA executive directors

Carl Burris1926-1948
T.L Noel1948-1957
Irvin A. Keller1957-1977
Jack W. Miles1977-1992
Becky Oakes1992-2006
Kerwin Urhahn2006-

Scott County charity event

With the help of a slate of games which included area coaches and alumni teams from some of Southeast Missouri's most decorated basketball programs, the Scott County Central charity basketball event last month raised about $2,000 for hurricane relief.

The event featured a pair of alumni games featuring teams representing Sikeston, New Madrid County Central, Charleston and Scott County Central. Charleston and Scott County Central have 21 state titles and numerous all-state players between them.

The game between the Scott County and Charleston alumni came down to the final shot, with Charleston pulling out a victory.

Scott County athletic director David Heeb said the event was a success for both the participants and fans, and hopes to see it continue in the future.

"I think it might turn into an annual event," he said.

Volleyball all-stars

The Jefferson County Conference coordinated its first all-star volleyball game last Saturday at Jefferson College in Hillsboro, Mo. The JCC stars first played a match against the Mineral Area Athletic Association all-stars and then played an intrasquad match.

Among the JCC all-stars were Kelsey Kutz from St. Vincent and four players -- Sarah Roth, Lindsey Lappe, Jennifer Ponder and Meghan Roth from Perryville.

The Mineral Area team won, 30-26, 30-23.


Central running back Hykeem Hammonds was omitted from Tuesday's story on the SEMO Conference football all-conference team. Hammonds, a junior, was a first-team running back.

Respond to this story

Posting a comment requires free registration: