The start of the 2021-22 school year is fast approaching, and that means the fall sports seasons are about to heat up for athletic directors, coaches, players and fans.
One person whose schedule is changing this year is Laura Grimm.
The Ringgold athletic director since the summer of 2015, Grimm has been hired as the assistant athletic director for Bethel Park School District.
“Bethel Park was an opportunity that I had to look into when it was posted,” Grimm said. “The decision was very hard because at the end of the day, Ringgold gave me my start in this field.
“They took a chance on a 25-year-old with no experience. I am forever indebted to Ringgold and feel the athletic department is headed in the right direction.”
Grimm will remain at Ringgold until Sept. 3, when school year starts. She had Bethel Park’s approval to do so.
“I volunteered to stay to get the fall sports off and running,” she said. “This is such a pivotal time and I didn’t want to leave them short-handed.
“With physicals, eligibility lists and other important aspects, I didn’t want administrators getting stuck doing things as they are busy enough as it is with the start of the school year.”
Grimm will serve under athletic director Dan Sloan. He had been the assistant athletic director under former Bethel Park athletic director Amy Scheuneman, who moved on to become the executive director of the WPIAL.
During her tenure at Ringgold, Grimm worked in “some capacity” with Sloan. While their schedules overlapped a bit at the high school level, the two worked frequently together because their middle school teams competed in the same organization.
From conversations she had with Sloan regarding the position, Grimm applied. After two rounds of interviews and a final meeting with the superintendent and assistant superintendent, Grimm was hired.
“I thought it would be a really good fit,” Grimm said. “I am excited to get going. Bethel Park is in a good place.”
Under Grimm, the Rams saw several major accomplishments with the 2018 baseball team winning a PIAA championship, and Anna Vogt winning WPIAL and PIAA diving championships, while several teams finished as runners-up for WPIAL championships.
Before becoming the athletic director, Grimm was the Rams girls basketball coach.
Despite her enthusiasm for the new post, Grimm is already having a hard time saying goodbye to Ringgold.
“There is a good group of people in that high school and leaving them is the hardest part,” she said. “Walking away from them, it feels like a family, and I will miss all of the people. But this was the right time to make a change.”