Larkin AD Chris Neibch leaving for Waubonsie Valley
By Erik Jacobsen firstname.lastname@example.org March 5, 2013 2:34PM
Updated: March 5, 2013 2:36PM
Waubonsie Valley filled its opening for a new athletic director next year and in the process created a vacancy for the same position at Larkin.
Chris Neibch was officially hired and introduced as the new athletic director at Waubonsie Valley last week. He will replace outgoing AD Mike Rogowski, who spent the past 18 years on the job and is retiring after the school year.
Neibch is in his third year as the AD and department head for physical education, driver’s education and health at Larkin. He will only focus on athletic director duties at Waubonsie Valley, which is located closer to his home in Wheaton.
“It was a very difficult decision just because I’ve really enjoyed being here at Larkin and they gave me the opportunity to become an athletic director,” Neibch said. “It’s a 12-month opportunity at Waubonsie Valley whereas here in (School District U46) we’re 10-month employees. I feel like for an athletic director, 12 months is what it needs to be and should be.”
Neibch’s name (pronounced Nebz) is well known in Chicago-area high school athletics thanks in large part to his late father Bill, who was the AD at Wheaton North for more than two decades. Wheaton North eventually named its gymnasium and girls holiday basketball tournament in Bill Neibch’s honor.
Chris Neibch is a 1997 Wheaton North graduate who went on to play football at Millikin. After a brief venture into the business world, Neibch turned to education and began his career in District U46 at Kenyon Woods Middle School eight years ago before moving to South Elgin High.
While at South Elgin, Neibch taught PE and driver’s education and was an assistant varsity football coach and sophomore basketball coach. He was hired as the AD at Larkin in 2010.
“We’re really excited about bringing Chris in,” said Waubonsie Valley principal Jason Stipp, who is in his first year at the school. “One of the things our coaches really wanted was someone with that athletic director experience. Chris brings that to the table and he’ll provide a good voice for all of our sports, which I think is important.”
Waubonsie Valley’s athletic programs are typically among the most competitive in the Upstate Eight. The Warriors advanced to the Class 8A quarterfinals in football last fall and are a perennial powerhouse in girls soccer.
“Growing up in the Wheaton area, I’m very familiar with the tradition at Waubonsie and know how they’ve excelled in a number of sports over the years,” Neibch said. “This is another challenge and I’m looking forward to it for sure.”