Pine Tree announces lone finalist for athletic director-head football coach

David A. Collins

Pine Tree ISD Board of Trustees will vote on a lone finalist for the position of Athletic Director/Head Football Coach next week. Coach David A. Collins, currently serving Lake Travis High School, will be proposed as the new leader of the Pine Tree Pirates in a special called board meeting scheduled for Monday, February 24, 2014, at 6:00 p.m, at the Central Administration Building. A reception to meet Coach Collins is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. also in the board room.

Collins says his objective is to use his past experiences to build an athletic program in Pine Tree ISD that is second to none.

"I am humbled and honored to have been offered the Athletic Director/Head Football position at Pine Tree ISD," said Collins. "I want to thank the PTISD selection committee for their professionalism throughout the process, and for affording me this opportunity."

Collins comes from Lake Travis High School, located approximately 20 miles west of Austin, Texas, near Lake Travis, where he has served as assistant head football coach, offensive coordinator, quarterback coach, and track coach, since March of 2011. The football team earned a 37-4 record and won the 4A Division I State Championship in 2011, and won district 15 5A District Championship in their first season as 5A in 2012. Nine athletes on his teams earned scholarships while playing for the team.

Prior to Lake Travis, David spent 7 years as the Offensive Coordinator/Quarterback at both Mabank High School in Mabank, Texas, and Garland High School in Garland, Texas. David is a Graduate of Sterling College (Bachelors) and Lamar University (Masters). His wife Crystal is currently the elementary physical education teacher at Bee Cave Elementary in Lake Travis ISD. According to Dr. TJ Farler, Superintendent for PTISD, his background experiences along with his reputation for strong leadership with students as well as with coaches set him apart from the other candidates. She believes Collins will be an asset to PTISD as well as the community in his new position.

"As with all employees selected to teach, to coach and to lead in our school system, we want to find the person who is the best match and who will work with us to continue a tradition of excellence for students both on the field and in the classroom," said Farler.

Collins will oversee all PTISD athletic programs in PTJH and PTHS, that currently involve about 865 students and 12 choices for athletic sports: baseball, basketball, cross country, football, golf, powerlifting, soccer, softball, swimming, tennis, track, and volleyball. In an earlier statement, Farler reported the district received 78 applications for the athletic director and head football coach position, and narrowed the search to three.

"They just kept coming in," she said. "We interviewed seven people in the first round and three candidates rose to the top."

"This has been a collaborative process," said Farler. "After the job was posted in December 2013, we started the process with discussions from all stakeholders. We talked to student athletes, coaches, faculty and staff members at the campuses; discussions have been conducted with the Board of Trustees, and the community."

Two community meetings were held on December 4, 2013, to discuss the profile for the Athletic Director's position. A survey was also available for parent/community input both online and in paper format for several weeks in December.

Starting in January, an interview team was assembled, which included the Superintendent's Executive Council and principals from junior high and high school. The team members used information from the surveys and the comments from the meetings, to create a profile. This profile was used to screen the applicants in the pool of potential candidates, and to narrow the number to eight candidates who were interviewed in the first round, and then three in the second round.

"We worked intentionally to provide a transparent and responsive process in our selection of the new AD," said Farler. "We looked for characteristics such as leadership ability, which includes strong communication skills, integrity and character; the ability to build and develop a strong team of coaches as leaders who would collaborate to build a strong program for students; coaching skills with the ability to motivate; and the ability to build strong working relationships with the campus and district staff, among other abilities provided in feedback from our community."

Pending board approval, Collins will succeed Interim AD/Head Football Coach Derrick Hennigan, who replaced Derek Fitzhenry who resigned during the 2013 season. A recommendation from the Superintendent to the Board of Trustees is expected at a special meeting, scheduled for 6:00pm, Monday, February 24, 2014, in the PTISD Board room at Central Administration Building, 1701 Pine Tree Road, Longview, Texas. All board meetings with the PTISD Board of Trustees are open meetings; employees and the public are welcome and encouraged to attend. For more information, contact PTISD central office, 903-295-5000, or


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