By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
Elections were completed recently to fill positions on the Michigan High School Athletic Association’s legislative body, its Representative Council, with six current members receiving re-election and a seventh selected to complete the term of a retiring administrator.
Kingsford athletic director Al Unger will continue to represent Class A and B schools in the Upper Peninsula, and Gobles athletic director Chris Miller will continue to represent Class C and D schools from the southwestern section of the Lower Peninsula. Adrian Madison athletic director Kristen Isom was re-elected to represent the Class C and D schools from the southeastern section, while Bear Lake athletic director Karen Leinaar was re-elected to continue as one of two at-large statewide representatives.
Alvin Ward, administrator of athletics for the Detroit Public School League, will continue to represent the Detroit Public Schools, and St. Ignace superintendent Don Gustafson was re-elected as one of two junior high/middle school representatives. In addition, Portage Northern athletic director Chris Riker was elected to complete the second of a two-year term representing Class A and B schools in the southwestern section. He will take the place of Fred Smith, who recently retired as athletic director at Benton Harbor.
The Representative Council is the 19-member legislative body of the MHSAA. All but five members are elected by member schools. Four members are appointed by the Council to facilitate representation of females and minorities, and the 19th position is occupied by the Superintendent of Public Instruction or designee. The Council meets three times annually, and five members of the Council convene monthly during the school year to form the MHSAA’s Executive Committee, which reviews appeals of Handbook regulations by member schools.
Additional elections took place to select representatives to the Upper Peninsula Athletic Committee. Escanaba athletic director Nick Nolde was elected to represent Class A and B schools, and Ishpeming Westwood athletic director Jon Beckman was elected to represent Class C schools. Rapid River athletic director Rick Pepin was elected to represent Class D schools.
The MHSAA is a private, not-for-profit corporation of voluntary membership by more than 1,500 public and private senior high schools and junior high/middle schools which exists to develop common rules for athletic eligibility and competition. No government funds or tax dollars support the MHSAA, which was the first such association nationally to not accept membership dues or tournament entry fees from schools. Member schools which enforce these rules are permitted to participate in MHSAA tournaments, which attract more than 1.4 million spectators each year.