About 15 years ago, current Fond du Lac boys basketball coach Mark Ziebell was leading the St. Mary Central basketball program in Neenah. Back then, one of his players was David Michalkiewicz.
Flash forward to present day. Now the shoe is on the other foot, so to speak.
On Monday, Michalkiewicz was approved by the Fond du Lac School District Board of Education to take over as the new athletic director for Fond du Lac High School. In a sense, Michalkiewicz will be leading his former high school coach, who actually contacted Michalkiewicz about the position opening.
“He reached out to me to see if I had any interest,” Michalkiewicz said of Ziebell. “After looking at the school district and looking at the goals and direction they want to take, they had a lot of the same ideas I had. I thought it would be a great opportunity.”
Michalkiewicz takes over for Kevin Deering, who stepped down in June to take a position with the Grafton School District. Michalkiewicz’s official starting date is Aug. 3.
For the past nine years, Michalkiewicz was the athletic director for Belmont High School, a school to the southwest of Madison with an enrollment of around 100 students. Going from a tiny school to one the size of Fond du Lac, with an enrollment of about 2,000 students, will certainly be an adjustment for Michalkiewicz, but he believes the principles he learned at Belmont will apply in any situation.
“I think it will be fine,” he said. “I think the things that allowed us to be successful at Belmont will continue to help me in Fond du Lac. Obviously it’s at a much larger scale, but things that make an athletic program successful remain the same.”
For now, Michalkiewicz doesn’t have any specific philosophies or policies that he hopes to instill in Fond du Lac but is instead looking to promote values already in place, such as the development of three-sport athletes.
“I’m extremely excited to start,” Michalkiewicz said. “I can’t wait to get working, get to know the people there and take part in a great athletic community.”
Sam Oleson: (920) 907-7930, email@example.com or follow on Twitter @sam_olesonFDL