Man Behind the Microphone


Photo by Natalie Wilson

Coach Turner takes his position behind our stereo system in the North Forsyth cafeteria quite seriously, and he is very protective of his microphone.

Everyone here at North Forsyth is accustomed to the classic lunch routine: sassily fling open the classroom door, shoot a nasty jeer as the ‘Satan-spawn’ who ran to be the first person in the lunch line, try not to knock over the socially-unacceptable punk who stole one of the chairs from the table, then spread the latest gossip on who-broke-up-with-who with friends. However, another part of our mental checklist is hearing Coach Turner get riled up behind the microphone about our upcoming football game or ‘special price’ on ice cream. Whether his pep pumps you up or pesters your prattle, his sparkling attitude is undeniable.

What makes him so happy? Coach Turner is passionately and devotionally in love with his job. Going on his fifteenth year here at North, he describes his position as “exciting, challenging, and definitely rewarding”, with a smile that lights up the entire cafeteria. He eats, breathes, and lives upholding the title “athletic director”. Working hours before and after school, he knows that it is important to be doing something which one enjoys dearly, and that he does. While his enthusiasm may be concerning, it is inspiring all the same.  His bright attitude and hard work has not gone unnoticed, as he was recognized as the Athletic Director of the Year for our Region. He will get the chance to go onto to compete for a title at State Level.

During the time he is not shooting out emails or phone calls, he can be found playing a round on the golf course or spending quality time with his wife and kids. When this ‘good-ole family man’ was asked the three things he would take with him to the planet of Neptune, his immediate response was a picture of his family, followed by his prized state champion ring, and iPhone – even though he is aware there is no cellular service.

Other than being a softie, Coach also has a smile-forcing sense of humor. Whether it is a smile of hysteria or pity, it is there. Taking humor to a level of embarrassment, his slip up on a Colorado vacation made it to America’s Funniest Home Videos, featuring an “accidental back-flip” on his part. The following year, he was shamefully forced to duck through the halls in fear of being recognized. Besides being an unintentional self-contortionist, another skill he possesses is auctioneering –a skill he puts his to use in our own lunch room. Coming through at speeds that can make an obstinate teenager turn their head, his fast-talkin’ over the microphone is no doubt impressive.

To most, he is just another figure of authority whose voice rises over ours, but getting to know him, you see that Coach Turner is that father helping his kid reach the top shelf in the grocery store, or that golfer hitting a couple rounds in his free time. He looks to authority himself, knows what it is like to be a teenager, and holds out the responsibilities that come with his job – even if it means tucking away his kind nature for a minute to make sure the rules are followed.