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Readers' Choice: Local Coaches Who Make a Difference

From Little League to high school football, which special leader holds a place in your heart?

They mold bodies and minds, nurture skill-sets, and lead boys, girls, men and women into battle.

They are coaches.

From Little League to high school football, those special leaders who guided us into competition hold a special place in our hearts. Was it the Little League coach when we were 11? The gymnastics coach who taught us to cartwheel? The swimming coach who pushed us to the brink to get an Olympic qualifying time?

Patch wants to hear about the coaches in Palos Verdes who make a difference. They can be an individual coach or a team coach, a head coach or an assistant. All of these people build bridges and character. They teach us what it takes to compete, and they made us better people in the process.

Nominate a coach in the comments below and tell us how this person makes a difference.

Starting next Monday, we'll publish a poll asking readers to vote on who the community looks to when they think of "coach."

PV Mom March 26, 2012 at 10:12 PM
Gary Butcher, Peninsula Pony League Baseball Coach should be on the list of best coaches in PV for the following reasons - 1) because he coaches for the love of the game. He is a volunteer, he's not getting paid, and has no kids in the league. He has no hidden agenda or ulterior motive and isn't out to promote his own child. He loves baseball and wants the kids to love the game. 2) Because the safety of the kids comes first. He is protective and has to fight with parents sometimes to keep the kids from overusing their arms. He believes it should be fun and that repetitive motion injuries can be avoided. He believes in longevity. 3) Because I have never heard a negative word or a bad tone used, not towards the kids, not towards the umps, not to anyone. He doesn't get upset or blame anyone when things go wrong. He is enthusiastic, and positive and just wants to teach the kids to play. Gary epitomizes everything you would want to see in a coach - a person who coaches for the love of the game.
Renee Gibson-Milch March 27, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Coach TOM SCOTT ~ Head JV Basketball Coach at Pen!!!
Megan Moore March 28, 2012 at 06:21 AM
Rich Heffernan, coach of PVHS soccer FS and formerly JV teams, is a class act. He cares about the boys, supporting both their soccer skills and their character. He hosts an annual fund raiser golf tournament to raise scholarship money for "his boys" and awards the Heffernan college scholarship to a deserving senior who submits an essay. One experience clearly displayed his true character when his JV boys were in a tournament in OC. They won the tournament, much to the surprise and dismay of the hosting school, who behaved poorly, actually throwing a punch during the post-game high five line. Mr. Heffernan ran up to pull his stunned boys away, telling them to not "be like them". The boys play their hearts out for him and truly respect his direction in coaching soccer, but more importantly they respect him as a man of character.
josephine heffernan March 29, 2012 at 04:29 PM
richard heffernan should be nominated as the most dedicated coach at palos verdes high school
josephine heffernan March 29, 2012 at 04:30 PM
great year rich.
josephine heffernan March 29, 2012 at 04:36 PM
keep up the good work.
Meredith Skrzypczak March 29, 2012 at 07:04 PM
Thanks for your nominations! Make sure you vote for your favorite coaches in our poll here: http://patch.com/A-rSqL

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