Angel Doyle ‘04M took the track world by storm before committing her life to Harrisburg high school students and athletes.
At just 16-years-old, Doyle tied the world record of 6.5 seconds in the 60-yard dash. This achievement will forever stand as a world record due to the sport switching to the metric system just a few years later.
Doyle actually favored softball, but decided to give track a try during her sophomore year at Central Dauphin East. The program was new, which sparked Doyle’s curiosity and prompted her to ask her parents to switch to track. Since her father found significant success as a state track champion, he fully supported her competing and decided to help as an assistant coach.
Doyle’s natural talent for running led to success at the conference, district, and state level. These accomplishments earned her attention from a club team that provided the opportunity to compete internationally. Just one year after her first track season, Doyle was traveling to meets all over the world. She exclaimed, “track took me to places I never imagined.”
After high school, Doyle attended Southern University in New Orleans on a full track scholarship. While at Southern, Doyle’s times earned her a spot on Team USA in national and international meets. She also qualified for the ’76, ’80, and ’84 Olympics, but was unable to compete for various reasons. Even so, she remained grateful for all the sport provided her, including her own Puma shoe, named “The Angel.”
After graduation, Doyle returned to her hometown to work for the Harrisburg school district and eventually attended Shippensburg University for her M.Ed in School Administration Principal K-12. The program helped her make the next into the next phase of her career.
Doyle served as acting principal at William Penn vocational school before moving onto her role as assistant principal at John Harris. She channeled her love for running track into coaching and actually turned down several principal positions because the district did not allow principals to coach.
Doyle said being a principal in the district demands a lot of time, which meant she could no longer coach. She therefore decided to stay in her role as an assistant principal to continue her mentorship as a coach. “Student-athletes had high expectations from me to help them be successful and I wanted to provide them all the opportunities to go to college.” She continued, “having a title means nothing to me, but remaining accessible to students where I’m needed comes first.”
Coaching turned out to be an extremely rewarding experience. Doyle had the opportunity to coach a number of track stars, including Dominique Darden, a state champion and 12-time All American who attended the University of Miami.
Doyle retired after 30 years in the Harrisburg school district, but continues to volunteer her time to tutor students. She believes in treating every student and athlete like family, which involves believing in them and providing them with the support they need to succeed.
Based on her own life experiences and accomplishments, Doyle said she always communicated to her students and athletes, “regardless of what you do, be the best at what you do.”