February 18th, 2016

Hyland's Heroes: Keith Wade

Samantha Stallings

Staff Writer


Hyland's Heroes: Keith Wade
From left to right: Ryan and Meredith Jones, Keith, Dana, and Logan Wade.

The following feature is a part of a bi-weekly series, sponsored by Hyland Insurance. "Hyland's Heroes" is a series of profiles that spotlight Louisville area Catholic volunteers, coaches and administrators who assist athletic programs and teams, and help promote excellence in all aspects of sports.

Know someone that you think should be featured as the next "Hyland's Hero”? Send your recommendation to editor@catholicsportsnet.com.

Keith Wade is a National Account Director for Sanofi Pharmaceuticals. Keith and his family attend St. Patrick where they have been parishioners for 20 years. Keith and his wife Dana have two adult children Meredith and Logan. Keith’s daughter Meredith is married to Ryan Jones and they have a daughter, Addison Shea Jones.

When and how did you get your start with St. Patrick?

I took my daughter Meredith to her third grade basketball tryouts and one of Meredith’s friends mom suggested I assist in running tryouts. I was hesitant at first since I had never coached before and wasn’t familiar with how to run tryouts or drills but was happy to help.  I was hooked from that point on.         

Who asked you to contribute or what got you involved?

Ginger Luerman was the mom who asked me to jump in and help.  I resisted at first but she wouldn’t take no for an answer. I’ve often looked back on that day and thought that Ginger was literally my Angel. My life was never the same. Unfortunately Ginger passed away several years ago but I will never forget the impact she had on my life, life of my family, parish and the boys and girls I had the privilege of coaching over 15 years. That moment literally changed my life forever.  I went on to coach my daughter through CSAA until her 8th grade year, then began coaching my son Logan the following year for the next six years at St Patrick.      

What sports did or do you volunteer to help and for how long?

I helped coached Logan’s flag football team for one year but left that to the experts in the following years.  I primarily coached basketball - I coached my daughter for 6 years followed by another 6 years coaching my son at St Patrick.  Both played in High School (Meredith at Sacred Heart & Logan at Trinity High School & Christian Academy of Louisville).    I was an Assistant Coach for two years with the Trinity AAU program back a couple of years ago.  I returned to St Patrick this year after about six years away to help coach the eighth grade boys team. Based on this quick summary I’ve coached in CSAA boys and girls basketball for roughly 15 years in a variety of capacities & programs.  

What’s the connection with your faith and giving your time to student athletes?

I last coached my own Boys 17U AAU Program (Louisville Storm) about four years ago.  The team was comprised of local and regional guys – outstanding basketball players and wonderful young men. I loved them all. While Logan played in college I decided to put coaching on hold. However, my life without coaching was unbalanced – my mom passed away about two years ago. This loss combined with my job becoming more demanding than ever, required me to reflect on what was important in life. While at Mass one Saturday night, I listened to the Deacon comment on the importance of “stewardship” and realized that God was telling me to get “back in the game” and give my time and talent to St Patrick. Turns out I needed those guys a lot more than they needed me!  

Who was the most influential person on your volunteer career? Why?

I’ve been blessed to be surrounded by great coaches & even better people but the coach I admired most was Julie Holt, Girls 8A St Patrick team. Formerly head coach at the University of Idaho, Julie followed her husband to Louisville with his job as football coach at U of L.  Idaho’s loss was our gain – her enthusiasm, energy, instruction, communication, & leadership were all incredible attributes. She demanded maximum effort and always got it from her teams.       

What are your major themes/principle as a volunteer?

I have high expectations for the team and myself & continually raise the bar to get the most out of the players.  Additionally, I demand mutual respect, maximum effort, continuous improvement, focus, positive attitude, execution, passion for the game & good sportsmanship.         

What are the fondest experiences or memories you have of your volunteer time?

My daughter’s eighth grade team playing in the city championship against St Agnes. Unfortunately, we lost but what great memories. With regard to Logan, I enjoyed watching my son develop throughout his CSAA and high school years into an outstanding basketball player in the Seventh Region.    

 

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