Coach Bowers you wear a lot of hats around Ensworth and seem to have your hands in a lot of different things, can you tell us some of the sports you coach and what being Associate Head of the School requires of you?
I coach football and basketball and also supervise all the sports going on through the year. It’s a real privilege to have your hands in not only athletics, but all the activities going on at Ensworth that make this such a well-rounded place. I am involved in development, admissions, service learning, I over see the grounds and of course the athletics programs.
I think a lot of people would be curious, what a typical day in the life of Coach Bowers really looks like?
Well, I think I would be interested to know what a typical day for me is like as well. I think it’s hard for me to have a “typical” schedule to my days. Looking at my calendar today I started off with a freshman parent meeting, followed by an admissions meeting and currently I am supposed to be in a meeting with a marketing guest we have visiting. Later today I will interview two track coaches and some boys’ lacrosse coaches and check on the 3:20 p.m. start of the spring sports. Then later tonight I have a boys’ basketball game.
Many people would describe you as a big family man and all your children are very athletic and stars in their own sport. Your oldest has even followed in your footsteps at David Lipscomb. Are athletics something you and your wife make a priority in the home or is that something the kids have learned to love on their own?
All of our children are individuals and love sports in different ways and for different reasons. I have four children and when they were younger Anna and Richard would often come with me to coach games or practices. They were basically gym rats and just loved being part of that life. I think of course the competitive spirit has found them through the environment they have grown up in and the lineage they come from. My father was actually one of the first ever S.E.C. officials and my wife’s family are very much into sports as well. However, if you asked my children there are things they are much more passionate about. Richard has a great interest in art and Anna’s passion is actually in mission work and Haiti.
After so much success and multiple championships at Montgomery Bell Academy, what really led your decision to make a move to Ensworth?
I think the biggest thing for me is Ensworth is co-ed and I have a co-ed family. I believe in the opportunity it provides to students and I believe that it has generated successful students. After 20 years of coaching and education to be presented with a blank canvas and the opportunity to start something new, I couldn’t pass that up. We were basically creating a school.
My greatest memory that I often come back to everyday, is the beginning of this school. I often like to recall each day what this place was like before the buildings and the students. I remember looking at a field 8 years ago thinking, that would be a great place we can play soccer one day. It was a farm; it was just land and a dream. That keeps me grounded every day and the fruition of it all coming together is the people.
I would love to see Shirley Jenkins highlighted as the next Red Gables faculty. She has been through two headmasters and I think she holds a lot of interesting information and maybe some secrets she would be willing to share.