Springdale Coach Goes the Distance to Volunteer

Friday, September 22 at 07:15 AM
Category: Arvest Community News
Steve Ebert wasn’t interested in becoming a coach as much as he was interested in spending some quality time with his daughter.
 
Ebert’s daughter was entering seventh grade at the time, and asked her father to start running with her because she wanted to join her junior high school’s cross country team. The two “did a lot of miles together,” Ebert said, and he felt good about helping her get an edge on her classmates when they showed up for the first day of practice.
 
When Ebert saw that his daughter was one of more than 100 kids at that first practice, however, he thought the team’s one coach might need some help. Fast-forward six years, and both the coach and Ebert’s daughter have moved on from Springdale Central’s cross country team.
 
Ebert, though, can still be found at practice – Monday-Friday at 6:45 a.m. – working as a volunteer coach.
 
“He loves the kids, he loves being out here, and… it was never about him, it’s always been about the kids and making kids having the joy of running,” said Chelsea Perry, the team’s current coach.
 

Ebert is the 22nd person to be featured in Arvest Bank’s People Helping People video series. The series is designed to celebrate individuals in the communities Arvest serves who are uniquely making a difference.
 
The videos are available via Arvest’s social media channels – YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and the Arvest Blog – and the bank will make related posts each time a new story appears. Additionally, Arvest social media followers can help spread the word about these inspiring community members by sharing, liking and retweeting the videos. Ebert’s video will launch on Sept. 22.
 
“Hopefully if I can impact one person a year, then it's all worth it,” Ebert said. “So I continue to do that just because it's rewarding, but also… it’s a need (that) somebody needs to fill.”
 
Ebert’s impact has been felt by far more than one person a year. Perry and teachers at Central have noticed improvement in Ebert’s student-athletes’ drive and effort both on the cross country course and in the classroom.
 
So, even though both of his children have now progressed through the program, Ebert still spends all those early mornings – and countless other hours – helping the team members reach their full potential. Natalie Watkins was a member of Ebert’s first team.
 
“I don't think without Steve’s help I would be a good runner or kind of be the person that I am,” she said. “I know it sounds kind of cheesy, but I don't think I would have kept motivating myself to get better if I didn't have his encouragement all those years.”
 
About Arvest Bank
Arvest Bank operates more than 250 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 16 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team. These banks serve customers in more than 120 communities, with extended weekday banking hours at many locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC.
 
Tags: People Helping People
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