With retirement looming, Tory Harvey reflects on two decades running Dallastown athletics

  • Tory Harvey will officially step down as Dallastown's athletic director on Nov. 30.
  • Harvey has been the Wildcats' AD for nearly 20 years.
  • Harvey will help Vince Sortino transition into the role as Dallastown's new AD.

It's seems surprising for someone who has been consumed by his job for nearly 20 years to simply retire without having a plan to stay active.

That, however, is exactly where soon-to-be former Dallastown athletic director Tory Harvey stands — without a defined retirement plan.

Tory Harvey

Working to maintain the excellence of the Wildcat athletic programs has been a nonstop challenge over his tenure.

The stress of the constant grind of being the AD at such a big school district can certainly wear anyone down.

Harvey’s new stress, however, has nothing to do with work.

Instead, it’s quite the opposite.

“I actually don’t have my retirement figured out yet,” said Harvey, who officially will be retired on Nov. 30. “And that’s causing a little bit of stress on my life right now. I’m going to have to take some time to actually figure that out.”

Whatever life has planned out for Harvey in retirement, there’s one thing for certain — there won’t be much sitting back and relaxing.

“I would like to at least find a part-time job or something to keep me busy,” he said. “I know that after working seven days a week for quite a long time that I’m going to need to be doing something or I will go stir crazy.”

Vince Sortino

Helping out his successor: Those plans are still months ahead for Harvey. His more immediate goal is helping his successor, former Baldwin athletic director Vince Sortino, slide into the Dallastown position without a hitch.

“I just want to make this transition as seamless as possible,” Harvey said. “I know that Vince brings a lot of experience with him, but I’ve only really talked to him for about five minutes. Aug. 6 will be a big day for us when we get together to try to figure out how to make this all as smooth as possible.”

Harvey’s desire to help Sortino is two-fold. One, he simply wants to be a good steward for the district he's served for so long. Two, from his past experience of taking over for Larry Adams, he knows the value of help from a predecessor.

“Larry was always available to me,” Harvey said. “Now Larry retired right away, so I had to rely on phone calls, but Larry was always kind enough to take my call. And I want to be there for Vince to help out. I know the entire athletic team is committed to helping this transition.”

Ex-Baldwin AD hired for same job at Dallastown

Lots of help: Harvey wanted to stress that, while he was officially the AD, he was far from the primary person behind Dallastown’s athletic success during his tenure. Harvey cited former high school principal George Jones as a big help, as well as his assistants, coaches and the rest of the Dallastown administration.

“I know for Vince that he’ll want to learn the culture and meet up with the different events staff, the teachers and just everyone,” he said. “There are really a lot of people behind the scenes that deserve a lot of credit. … I’m just the guy that’s out front. I’ve received tremendous help from the administration, coaches, students and parents. It’s a wonderful combination that I’ve just been blessed to be a part of.”

Proud of achievements: There have been a lot of things for Harvey to be proud of over his tenure at the school.

He was there to oversee the renovation to the high school gymnasium, which is now used for many regular-season and postseason events, as well as the installation of a turf field inside of Wildcat Stadium that was spearheaded by the Dallastown Area Educational Foundation.

“The credit for the field really goes to the Dallastown Educational Foundation,” he said. “They really had a vision and helped to raise the funds for it all. Kevin Marquette was the president at the time and he put in a lot of work. We were very fortunate to get a tremendous amount of support from the Dallastown American Legion and Greg Rebert. That was a huge benefit when that field became a reality.”

Lots of athletic success: Additionally there has been a great deal of on-the-field success throughout the entire 60-plus athletic programs that the school district sponsors at various levels.

“It’s been throughout all of them,” he said of the school’s athletic programs. “And the boys’ tennis team won the only state championship in school history back in 2004, and I still remember that. It was in Williamsport and that was a great trip. To be honest it does seem like it was yesterday. These 20-some years have just moved along so quickly.”

Reach Ryan Vandersloot at sports@yorkdispatch.com.