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After talk of removal, Centerville retains cross country coach

After word got out to several parents and teachers that a “minority voice in the community” wanted the school board to oust veteran girls cross country coach David Dobson, a strong majority appeared Monday night at the board’s meeting to show support for his tenure.

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Centerville’s girls cross country team has won four consecutive state championships and Dobson was selected as the U.S Cross Country Coaches Association’s 2017 coach of the year.

But according to Sara Cox, who teaches first-grade classes with Dobson in the district, there was a group of people working to have him relieved of his coaching duties. Well over 100 people turned out for the school board meeting.

“There was “a minority voice was against him to be coach,” she said. “Many of us worried that those voices might cause him to lose his job. I drove all the way from Germantown tonight to voice support so that wouldn’t happen.”

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Before Cox spoke during the portion of the meeting reserved for public comment, she was informed that the board had in fact voted 3-1 in favor of renewing Dobson’s contract. Board Member Annie Self cast the lone vote against renewing his contract.

Board members said afterward that since it was a personnel decision there would be no comment on the vote, but only the vote tally itself.

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“I wish I had the opportunity to call David Dobson coach myself,” Cox, who was a track athlete at Wright State University, said to the board. “I believe that David has proven himself to be trustworthy and thank you for renewing his contract.”

Nobody spoke against the contract renewal. During an earlier work session, nothing was said against Dobson and no letters were submitted to be read advising that he should not be rehired as coach.

Attempts to reach Dobson following the meeting were unsuccessful.

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