With Gonzales girls coordinator Cully Doyle returning home to Medina ISD to take on the role as athletic director, Gonzales Athletic Director Mike Waldie made the decision to hire from within by promoting Kevin Johnson to fill Doyle’s vacancies as the new girls coordinator, head girls track and field coach and head cross-country coach.
“That’s the precedent that I want to put in place here,” Waldie said. “When we have promotable people up to coordinator spots within our football, within our girls’ side, within our sports in general, I want to promote from within every time there is [someone promotable] and Coach Johnson’s been the right-hand man here for Coach Doyle.”
Johnson will be entering his fifth year with Gonzales ISD and his third year at Gonzales High where he served as Doyle’s assistant in cross-country and girls track and field.
“Losing Coach Doyle is not what we wanted,” Waldie said. “I’m so excited for him. Getting an athletic director job in what he does is obviously very rare and very hard to do, so I’m very proud and happy for him and it’s his actual hometown, so it’s a lot of positives. He’s irreplaceable and we’re going to miss him like no other.”
“The good news is, his right-hand man was ready, and I met with him and decided, ‘we’ve got our guy here,’” Waldie continued. “There’s no sense to ‘hem-haw’ this around, there’s a lot of transition already going on the girls’ side and this brings some consistency to it. He’s literally going straight up, going to head cross-country, head girls’ track and girls’ coordinator.”
Last year, Johnson was the Texas Girls Coaches Association 1A-4A Sub-Varsity Cross-Country Coach of the Year. He also adds to his impressive resume many achievements as an athlete after competing for and graduating from Abilene Christian University.
Waldie believes if Johnson was someone outside the district who applied to the position randomly, his resume would have been one that stuck out.
“This one was a no-brainer,” Waldie said. “I’m excited for our girls and to see his leadership grow here. Like everybody, you need your first shot, and he’s getting it now. I’m looking forward to feeding off that and working together with him.”
Doyle’s experience level allowed for him to wear a lot of hats in the Apaches athletic program. Waldie expects Johnson to fill those holes Doyle will leave, though some changes are expected.
“We’re hoping that transition is as seamless as possible,” he noted. “But as a job perspective, I think some things are going to change, just because of it being a new athletic director. If I had to put [a number], 90 percent of it will be the same, job wise.”