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Masters In Coaching Episode XXI: Athletic Director Alan Foster

Coach's Playbook

Posted on 5/25/2021 by Petros and Money, Tim Cates


Alan Foster, Athletic Director, Liberty High School


He was a stand-out runner in Oregon, got into teaching in Alabama, moved his family to France! Now, the Director of Athletics at Liberty High School in Hillsboro, Oregon. What a journey he’s been on. He’s Alan Foster, we talk to him next on Episode XXI.

Show Highlights

  • How Peter Weber, the Executive Director of Oregon’s Athletic Association navigated the pandemic for high school sports
  • How they worked through Season 1 by implementing conditioning outdoors
  • Season 2 was football, cross country, soccer, and volleyball
  • Season 3 is finishing up and it is the typical spring sports season of baseball, softball, track and field, tennis, golf, and lacrosse as they started basketball, swimming, and wrestling
  • Liberty High School is a 6A school with just over 1600 students and are a member of the Pacific Conference with the other Hillsboro high schools
  • We are all about “our school, our team” here, the kids are trying to be better Falcons everyday and make the best version of themselves
  • I can’t tell you how proud I am of our coaches, and our teachers, are our staff who look for opportunities for kids to get involved, whether it’s athletics or activities, to be connected to school
  • A goal of mine over the next 3-5 years is to connect kids to school - kids who are connected to school graduate, and do well, they also have confidence and they make a difference in the world
  • Alan’s mom, Emily Foster, was a teacher of the year in the state of Oregon and is still teaching Kindergarten (39 years at the same school) she’s an inspiration for her dedication
  • He also benefited from amazing coaches like Coach Danner at Aloha High School and Mr. Yarnell, both really character-driven people
  • He also learned from Coach Dellinger at Oregon State
  • How his desire to compete played out
  • The blessing of competing with Olympians Bob Kennedy and Steve Holman
  • Why he did not expect to get into Athletics Administration
  • The first year in Athletics Administration was really hard - and then the second year, I learned what I didn’t know the first year
  • Your attitude determines your altitude
  • Other mentors include Tom Bent and Aloha, Pete Lucich, Dennis Burk, OADA Tim Hoodie and Tim Sam
  • Shout-outs to Missy Smith at OES, Anna Maria at St. Mary’s, Laura Jagar and Vicky Knelms, and newcomer Kate Williams
  • We need more voices at the table, we need more women in Athletic Director roles
  • Make sure you grow people who will bring a different perspective and voice to the table, it will enrich all of us
  • How being an elite athlete in a DI school informed his work as an AD
  • You’ve got to become a better asker, what does it feel like to play for you?
  • Every student has potential and sometimes we shame that out of kids, we put expectations on kids that if they don’t win, they’re nothing
  • Your value and your worth are not determined by your finish
  • Why he takes on a “grandfather” attitude once or twice a day
  • Why he returned to school even though he was working 70-80 hours a week and had two teenage boys

Tags: Masters in Coaching, Athletic Director

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