Kathy (Harris) Quickle was born March 11, 1970 in Ashland, Ohio to parents Jerry and Bobbie Harris. She is the youngest of three children. Her older sister, Jerri Jo, and older brother, Rob, brought out her competitive nature at a very young age. Being the youngest in the family and in the neighborhood, Kathy became very determined in keeping up with those around her. Summer days were spent with the neighborhood kids playing kick ball, football, and whiffle ball.
It was her neighbor, Mary Henley Davis, who gave Kathy her chance to start softball at an early age. At age 4, Kathy was batgirl for Mary's team. Over the years, summers were spent playing in the youth league softball program and on traveling softball teams. Two coaches that took an interest in Kathy's pitching were, John Carlisle and Bob Wickam. They introduced her to Ashland fast pitch legend, Chuck Smiley. With his help, they converted Kathy's underhand pitch to slingshot, a very unusual delivery method. Over the next winter, Kathy, along with Carlisle and Wickham, would spend many hours in the Loudonville High School study hall room, working on improving accuracy and speed.
Upon entering her freshman year, Kathy soon found out that in order to be a varsity-starting pitcher, she would need to work harder than ever to improve her pitch speed and accuracy. Rob, her brother, spent hours with her in the high school wrestling room working on pitch placement and speed. Her sophomore year showed the effects of her determination and willingness to work hard to achieve her goals. She became the starting pitcher in every other game, cut her walks in half, struck out three times as many batters, and her ERA dropped from 3.29 to 0.88. Over her high school years, Kathy's ERA continued to drop until as a senior, she achieved a 0.44 ERA. In addition to contributing to her team with pitching, she also played center field and shortstop and ended her career batting .345. Throughout high school, Kathy was also in volleyball, band, choir, and honor society. In 1988, she graduated fourth in her class with honors.
Completing her high school goals, Kathy then entered college at Baldwin-Wallace College in Berea, Ohio. She was recruited as a pitcher but she also played shortstop and was a regular contributor in the batting line-up. As a freshman, she was named first team all conference and planned on returning the following year. However, after months of being homesick, she returned to Loudonville halfway through her sophomore year. With her dreams of playing college softball completed, she helped the Loudonville Redbirds pitchers and hitters for the next two years.
Next to sports, Kathy loves helping students learn. In high school she tutored many friends with schoolwork. With that in mind, she entered the education program at The Ohio State University in Mansfield. She graduated in 1993 with a Bachelors Degree in Education and in 1997 earned her Masters in Education at Ashland University. In the fall of 1994, she was hired by Clear Fork Valley Local Schools as a fifth grade teacher. She taught fifth grade for six years and moved to kindergarten where she is currently completing her twenty-first year of teaching.
In the spring of 1994, she married Jerald Quickle. In 1997, Jerald and Kathy's family was completed with the birth of their son, Garrett Allen. He is currently a junior at Loudonville High School and is involved in golf, basketball, and baseball. Kathy and her family still reside in Loudonville, Ohio and they firmly believe that giving back to the youth is necessary. Children are the future and they need many adults willing to give their time and energy to making a difference in their lives.
Nominator: LYLE GRAY