New Doherty athletic director Stephanie Leasure played basketball for the Spartans and UCCS

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Previous girls' basketball coach and assistant principal Stephanie Leasure was publicly named athletic director of her Doherty High School alma mater Thursday by principal Kevin Gardner via the school’s Facebook page.

Leasure is assuming 13-year athletic director Chris Noll’s role. Noll will be leaving for a District 11 position. According to chsaanow.com, the job appeals to Noll because he will have the ability to impact more students.

“It’s the only reason I would leave Doherty,” Noll said. “(The) district and activities director position in 11 really was the only position that could pull me away.”

Noll thinks Leasure will make a great athletic director at Doherty. She has a “burning desire” for improvement in all areas at the high school, “Whether it be student test scores, whether it’s basic instruction in the classroom, (or) whether it’s coaching,” Noll said. “In all aspects of her life and working with those around her, she just wants constant improvement. … (It is) something that I’m impressed with.”

Leasure won a state basketball title in her 1995 senior year. As a teacher, she’s experienced the loss of one of her sophomore students to a rare blood disease, yet seen the harvest of love her students foster during fundraising events. As an administrator, she’s tackled tough issues including fires and injuries with a “rock-solid administration team.”

Leasure said she’s loved sports her whole life. It has been an innate love. She grew up playing all kinds of sports with her dad and neighborhood kids. She then went on to play basketball at New Mexico State and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Five years ago she was inducted to the UCCS Hall of Fame.

In her new position, Leasure hopes to influence instruction, but also kids’ overall experience. Leasure wants to make leaders out of student-athletes and see the school more ingrained in community. Passionate about what athletics can do for young people, their self-confidence, self-worth and how they approach life, Leasure believes sports are more important than they ever have been.

“There (are) so many kids who don’t feel good about themselves,” Leasure said. “And sports, they just make you feel good … not only mentally of course because of endorphins, but they make you feel physically strong, and when you’re physically strong you feel more self-confident about your body and everything else.”

In a realm of mostly male athletic directors, Leasure is excited she will be able to help young ladies know that they can do whatever they want and if they love sports, that they can have a future in sports.