Indiana Runner » Staff


Drake Sterling (
Chief Executive of Operations, Boys Coordinator

Drake took over as the main man in charge of Indiana Runner in May of 2011. His duties include being head of marketing, article/news coordinator, website designer as well a message board administrator. Prior to the new position, Drake specialized in the Carmel Semi-State Rankings. He currently runs for the post collegiate middle distance group, the Wright Distance Project, and is also an assistant coach at Zionsville High School.

Drake attended LaPorte High School from 2002-2005. While there, he was a state qualifier in the 300 hurdles and Long Jump. He competed collegiately at Indiana State University and Vincennes University for where he was a 2 time All-American in the decathlon and 4×4.

In 2007, he suffered a shoulder injury that would ultimately end his career as a decathlete. Refusing to give up the sport, he transferred to Indiana State University to focus on middle distance. He has spent the majority of his post-collegiate training time focusing on the 800, and set a personal best of 1:48.70 during the 2012 outdoor season. He is also a two-time USA National Championship Qualifier for 800m. Drake currently lives in Brownsburg with his wife, Sarah.

Colin Altevogt (
Girls Coordinator

After being one of the big three writers on staff at the time of the Hoosier Authority merger, Colin led the split and return to Indiana Runner in July of 2008. A driving force behind the promotion of equal coverage, Colin has concentrated on girls cross and track in his time at Indiana Runner while also serving as play-by-play announcer during IR webcasts.

Colin is a 2006 graduate of Fort Wayne Snider High School and a 2010 graduate of Franklin College where he majored in secondary education. In high school, Colin ran in two state track finals as part of a 4×800 meter relay team, and his 2004 team holds the dubious distinction of being the fastest relay not to earn All-State medals.

Previously, Colin served as an assistant boys and girls cross country coach for the Bull Dogs of Columbus North for three seasons. Currently, he works as a Spanish and English teacher as well as assistant girls cross country coach at Avon High School.

Outside of running and coaching, some of Colin’s interests include learning Latin-based languages, reading classic 20th century literature, following the Indianapolis Colts and playing “The Floor is Lava.”

Robert Swank (
Small School Writer

Being part of the since the beginning, the very beginning, and through Hoosier Authority, Swank’s contributions have been incredible for the small schools within the state in gathering them recognition. He will continue to help, and even at higher levels this upcoming year.

Robert ran for Northfield High School where he was fourth in the 2 mile at the 1969 state meet. He then went on to be Purdue’s #1 runner his sophomore and junior years before being plagued with an injury his senior year. His track bests are 14:21 for 5K, 9:06 in the steeple, and 8:58 for the 2 mile.

Mike Slaubaugh (

Mike is an accounting professor at Indiana University – Purdue University Fort Wayne and an avid follower of Hoosier high school cross country and track and field. He is a former writer for Indiana Running & Racing Times and Midwest Running, covering the high school state finals in those sports. A varsity runner at Western High School, Mike found he was more suited to the longer distances while at Manchester College. He continued to run competitively while earning his MBA and PhD degrees at Ball State University and Indiana University.

His peak running days were in the mid-1980s competing for The Athlete’s Foot Racing Team. During that time, he set PRs of 15:22 (5K), 31:31 (10K), and 1:09:34 (half marathon) when he finished 8th at the 1986 Indianapolis Mini-Marathon. After joining the master’s ranks, he focused on marathons, qualifying for the Boston Marathon in 2006 and 2007 and setting a lifetime PR of 2:49:10 at the 2006 Chicago Marathon until being sidelined by knee surgery in 2008. After returning to running, Mike crossed off a bucket list goal of finishing the New York City Marathon in 2011 and currently competes on the Three Rivers Running Company Racing Team.

Brandon Jones (

Brandon begins his twelfth season covering cross country and track & field. He began compiling rankings and writing articles for both boys and girls cross country and track and field at Indiana Runner in 2001.

In high school, Brandon lettered five times while at Warren Central. He was a two-time team captain and ran varsity/junior varsity for one of the deepest XC teams in Indiana history (12 guys under 17 minutes). He was a part of two state XC qualifying teams (the 1999 edition winning the Franklin Central Semi State and placing 7th in Bloomington). In track, Brandon ran anything from 400 to 3200 meters.

Currently, Brandon is the head coach for the Warren Central Boys Cross Country Team. During his time, he has also had the opportunity to coach under two of Indiana’s greatest in Dennis McNulty (Warren Central) and Mike Holman (Lawrence Central).

Brandon lives in Avon (just west of Indianapolis) with his wife of seven years (who is also a teacher) and his dog Buster.

Brett Hess (
Girls New Haven Semi-State Coordinator

Known in northeast Indiana as “Runningwriter”, Brett has covered cross country/track and field for the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel since 2000. He has also written for CBS Sports, Running Times and Marathon & Beyond. But that is only a fraction of his involvement in the sport: He is also a runner, coach, father, race director and motivational speaker.

In high school, Brett ran for Harding (Class of ‘83), helping the Hawks qualify for the 1981 state championship. (In what his coach, Larry Yant, termed “an average race in an un-average field”, Brett finished 94th in 16:27.) He competed for four years at Marion College (now Indiana Wesleyan University), helping the then-Titans win four consecutive conference XC titles. Perhaps his greatest achievement while in college was as a reporter for the Marion Chronicle-Tribune. Brett placed third in the 1986 Associated Press Sports Editors contest for “Best Investigative News Story” when he broke a story on a Marion runner who won the master’s division at the New York City Marathon, but was then busted for cheating.

Brett wrote for seven newspapers in six states before moving back to his hometown in 1998. In 2000 he returned to sport of running after a 13-year hiatus and quickly qualified for the 2001 Boston Marathon. Brett ran Boston 8 straight years while in the same period running the New York, Chicago, Honolulu, Anchorage, Atlanta, Columbus, Tecumseh Trail and Gera (Germany) Marathons.

The last six years has seen Brett focus his running energies on his writing and the support of his children’s running careers. Sons Brad (Class of ‘11) and Alex (Class of ‘13) were both two-time all-state XC runners for Carroll H.S. and both were IATCCC Mid-East Team members. Both boys were also all-state performers in track and Alex finished his prep career as the sixth-fastest Indiana 1600-meter runner (4:06).

Chuck Heimberg (
New Prairie Girls Semi-State Coordinator

Chuck is a middle school teacher at Fegely Middle School in Portage, the school system which he attended. While a student at PHS Chuck competed in cross country and track for legendary Portage coach Bill Wilke.

Following his graduation from Ball State University Chuck began teaching and coaching in Portage. In 1996 he became Coach Wilke’s assistant cross country coach, a position he held through the 2000 season. During this time he helped coach the Indians to state finals finishes of 5th, 19th, 2nd, 1st, and 13th. Chuck was also the distance coach for the Portage track team in 2001, coaching Michael Taylor to a state title in the 800 as well as a 4th place finish at Outdoor Nationals.

In 2003 Chuck became the head girls cross country coach at Portage. During his first season Christina Blackwell qualified for the state finals as an individual, and as a team Portage qualified for the state finals six of his eight seasons. Their highest team finish was 12th, which they achieved in 2004 and 2008.

Chuck lives in Portage with his wife Debbie and their four children, Tyler, Kelly, Alex and Nick. Tyler, Kelly and Alex are all Indiana University students, and Nick is a junior at PHS and a member of the Portage Cross Country team.

Vicky Warzyniak (
Girls Brown County Semi-State Coordinator

Vicky has been involved with XC & Track since the 6th grade. In the 80′s she attended high school in Hurricane, WV, where she lettered in both XC & Track. She placed 4th at State in the 1600 meter her freshman year, and broke her school record that was held for over 12 years. Her sophomore year she was plagued by injuries that eventually led her to stop running competitively her Junior year. To this day she still runs, but now exerts her strength’s for the adult ladies IU Tennis team where she’s been competing for over 10 yrs. She moved to Indianapolis in 1990 for her job, which is a top-ranked, global eyewear company named Marchon, and moved to Bloomington in 1996, shortly before the birth of her twin daughters. Over the years, she spent a lot of time coaching and volunteering in youth sports such as basketball, softball, and volleyball, until one of her daughters expressed the same passion for XC & track, which she also happened to be in the sixth grade. She still resides in Bloomington with her husband David, and her daughters, Katy & Alex.

Vicky has been following IndianaRunner since 2008, and appreciates that you can follow the athletes and their schools, which showcase their talents and development over the years, which in turn tell the follower’s their story. She wants to continue to provide insight for the ladies of Brown County to assist them to be the best they can be so that their story can inspire us all.

Darryl Stevenson (
Carmel Boys

Darryl Stevenson graduated from North Central High School in 2005. While there, Darryl was an All-State athlete in Cross Country and Track, as well as being an Indiana All-Star. He continued his running career at Indiana University, where he ran on the Cross Country and Track & Field teams.

Darryl graduated from Indiana University in the spring of 2010 with a double major in the Kelley School of Business. He is currently completing a Master’s Degree in Education, and is an Assistant Coach at his alma mater, North Central High School.


Steve Mounts (
Brown County Boys Semi-State Coordinator

Steve has followed IndianaRunner and its predecessor for 5 years now and enjoy how it has greatly increased state-wide knowledge and sharing of information.  He was a 1987 graduate of Ball State University majoring in Accounting and History - later obtaining his CPA and Real Estate Broker’s license.  He’s lived in Elkhart and Muncie, then the Indpls-area, working for the Simon shopping mall group for a number of years before returning to southern Indiana.

His brief running highlights include an AAU 400m state championship at age 14 and posting a 2:00 flat 800m as a sophomore at Evansville Reitz HS where he also played basketball, tennis, baseball, and cross country.  He remains involved with multiple sports having coached or been involved with Little League baseball, youth basketball, golf, and middle school cross country.  He and his wife, Pam and currently live in Haubstadt, just north of Evansville, with their two sons who currently run at the junior high and high school levels.

Troy Heckaman (
“Boys and Girls Shot and Discus Coordinator”

Troy is a graduate of Ball State University with his Graduate degree in Athletic Administration.Troy has 14 years collegiate coaching experience (baseball) and enters his sixth year coaching throws. A call to service ignited Troy’s interest in the throws when his local middle school program expressed a need for a volunteer to work with its throwers. Wanting to provide these athletes with knowledgeable instruction and deliver an enjoyable experience, he became a student of the throw disciplines.

Troy is currently the throws coach (volunteer –Assistant Coach) at the Culver Academies, and is an active member of the National Throw Coaches Association, Indiana Association of Track and Cross Country Coaches, AAU, and is pursuing USATF Level 2 certification in the throws. Troy has a great appreciation for the student athlete and athletic process and looks forward to building the throws side of Indiana Runner to serve and be an advocate for Hoosier throwers. Troy resides in Marshall County near Plymouth with his wife, Jennifer and their three children Leah, Michelle and Adam.