During these unusual circumstances, many find themselves reflecting on the past school year. Athletic Director Debbie Fiske finds herself reminiscing on her five years at Kingswood Oxford as her time here comes to a close.
In her five years at KO, Mrs. Fiske has made countless changes and had an extremely positive impact on the KO Athletic Community. We are grateful for her countless accomplishments, limitless energy, and contagious school spirit.
“I have been fortunate to work with so many talented student-athletes, coaches, staff, and faculty,” Mrs. Fiske said. “The collaborative efforts have hopefully helped make the athletic experience at KO both memorable and valuable for all of our students.”
Mrs. Fiske has made many memories during her time at KO, from participating in a cross-country practice to joining in the packed Hewett gym during KITs, but one of her favorites is the Friday Night Lights games this past fall. “That had been a goal I had wanted to bring to KO for the students,” Mrs. Fiske said. “To see the community come together with athletics at the center, bursting with school spirit and pride, even in the most freezing temperatures, were proud moments for sure.”
Mrs. Fiske has been an advocate for the athletic program and has moved the program into a better position than it was when she first started five years ago. “When I first came to KO, the fields and athletic areas were dull,” Mrs. Fiske said. “Spirit, pride, enthusiasm, creativity, and traditions seemed to be lacking. With the help of some terrific colleagues and student-athletes, we were able to change that direction.”
Some of her proudest accomplishments are the Hoffman Field House transformation, the Friday Night Lights games, and the Student Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC). She has also worked with athletic branding to create the new Wyvern, has gained an athletic presence on social media, added Form Two Day, enhanced Hewett Day and Girls in Sports Day, and brought back numerous traditions such as varsity letter jackets.
Athletic Trainer Julie Richardson is just one of the many people that Mrs. Fiske has influenced during her time at KO. “No matter how long or short the day is for us, she made work fun,” Ms. Richardson said. “With her energy, smile, and passion for athletics, she made KO Athletics fun to work for.”
Mrs. Fiske always pushed her co-workers out of their comfort zone. “Ever since Mrs. Fiske started at KO five years ago, she has pushed me to use my non-athletic training talents to spruce things up,” Ms. Richardson said. “Whether it be learning a new photo editing program, designing banners, or organizing an event, she was there with support and to give ideas to help enhance the athletic program at KO.”
Ms. Richardson and the rest of the athletic department staff wish Mrs. Fiske the best of luck in her future endeavors.
With all of her accomplishments, Mrs. Fiske feels that it is time for her to continue her journey. “I feel I have moved the program forward in large strides,” Mrs. Fiske said, “and now it’s time to hand the baton off to the next person who can carry KO Athletics to the next plateau.”
Mrs. Fiske wishes the KO Community the best, and she is confident with the position the Athletic Department is in. “I am leaving KO Athletics in a good place,” she said. “We have tremendous coaches who care about the total development of the students. We have fantastic student-athletes who are passionate about competing and enjoying what being a part of a team is all about.”
Sophomore Alexis Vail is a dedicated member of SAAC and has been working with Mrs. Fiske over the past two years. “She put all of her energy into creating fun events and activities through sports, bringing the whole school together,” Vail said. “She put everything into athletics, which I admire so much. She allowed SAAC members the freedom to come up with great ideas and work alongside her to execute them.”
She has tremendous confidence in the relationship between the students and the staff. “With the two together, athletics will continue to help strengthen the KO campus spirit and camaraderie,” Mrs. Fiske said. “I look forward to following and cheering on the exploits of our school teams and the success of our athletes for many years to come.”
We want to thank Mrs. Fiske for everything she has done for the school, athletic department, and community as a whole. We wish her the best, and we look forward to seeing where this new path takes her.