Lewis & Clark HS, Ferris HS
Hall of Fame Class of 2010
When it comes time to recognize a coach, many people turn to the coach’s records and statistics. Won – Loss records are recognized along with team titles and individual performances. Many times, the true character of the coach is lost in the endless list of statistical records. There are some that rise above the stats. There are some individuals who honestly represent what the coaching profession is all about. Pat Pfeifer is that coach. Track and Field lost a great friend in 2009. Cancer took his life in December but his memory will live on with his induction into the Hall of Fame. To say Pat Pfeifer loved to coach is an understatement. The most telling statistic one should focus on when looking back on Coach Pfeifer’s career is the fact that he coached 96 sport seasons. What a testament to a great coach!
Pat grew up in Spokane, Washington. He attended North Central High School where he excelled at football and track. He went on to attend Eastern Washington University where he was a member of the track and field team. Upon his graduation from EWU, Pat began teaching at Lewis and Clark High School. Thus began one of the most remarkable coaching careers in state history. Pat Pfeifer coached 37 years of track and field. He spent eighteen seasons as either a head boys coach or a head girls coach, one season as the head coach of both and he spent eighteen seasons as an assistant coach. From 1968 to 1980 he served as an assistant coach for the LC boys and girls teams. From 1981 to 1983 he served as the head coach for the LC girls team. In 1984, he was the head coach for both the LC girls and boys teams. In 1985 Pat moved to Ferris and served as the head boys coach until 1993. During that time, Pat also served as the head football coach at Ferris. From 1994 to 1998, he served as an assistant coach for the Ferris boys and girls teams. In 2003, Pat moved back to LC where he served as the head girls coach until 2008. It was during his retirement from teaching that he served his final head coaching years at LC. Retirement for Pat was nothing more than an opportunity to enjoy the coaching profession he cared so deeply for his entire life.
During his time as a track and field coach, he coached eleven individual state champions, six regional champions and too many district champions to count. His head coaching career included seven top ten teams placing at the state meet, two Greater Spokane League championships, and an outstanding dual meet record. One of the most telling signs of his coaching career is the fact that he coached seventy-seven entries into the LC Girls Hall of Fame. He was recognized as the GSL coach of the year in 2005. Recognition was common for Coach Pfeifer. In 1992, he was a recipient of the Disney Teacher Award. He was presented with the Washington State Coaches Association Lifetime Achievement Award, an award that was in recognition of this remarkable 96 season career. The Washington State Football Coaches Association awarded him a Golden Helmet award. He was a mentor to many young men and women athletes and coaches. It is fitting that two of his children went on to coach with him at LC, his son Mike and his daughter Stephanie. His daughter Stephanie will carry on the Pfeifer name as the head girls coach at LC. At the end of his life, it can be said that Pat Pfeifer was a true coach!
Pat was married to his favorite English teacher Sally, an outstanding member of the Lewis and Clark faculty. He was a loving father to Mike, Stephanie, Jeannie and Alyssa. He lived his life with the honest acknowledgement that he loved coaching. He coached until the very end. To see the outpouring of respect and admiration is a testament to the commitment he made to the profession he loved. Coach Pfeifer’s enthusiasm for the sport of track and field and his love for coaching made LC track and field and Ferris track and field a special experience for generations of young athletes. He is a great man and his memory lives on in the many athletes, coaches, parents, community members and other people he touched over his great career. His indu When you think of the sport of track and field in Kelso, Washington, you will end up hearing the name Joe Stewart. If you ask about Coach Stewart as a coach, you will hear about the positive influence he had on the student athletes he coached before you hear about his outstanding coaching achievements. Coach Stewart is described as being a fatherly figure that told his athletes what they needed to hear not necessarily what they always wanted to hear, as a friend that cared about you not only within the sport he coached but in every aspect of your life and as a guidance counselor who paved the way for you to further develop by guiding you toward college. His athletes said that Coach Stewart taught his athletes to strive to do their best no matter what their ability and his focus was always on improving. By improving, winning would take care of itself. His influence was so great that the community named the Kelso High School track after him in 2004. Quite a recognition for a Kelso alum from the class of 1972.ction into the Track and Field Coaches Hall of Fame is a testament to his numerous contributions to the sport in Washington State and the Greater Spokane community.