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"Cougars on 3, Family on 6!” Eight Years of Coaching and More from Mr. Cooper

Manny Shklar

Layout Editor

Whether you know him as Barrack’s Dean of Student Life or our Athletic Director, Mr. Justin Cooper is always a welcoming presence to everybody. Sadly though, after eight years of hard work and dedication, he is moving on to become the Athletic Director of The Shipley School in Bryn Mawr. At Barrack, besides his other positions, he was also the head coach of our varsity baseball team, which came in second place this year in our league. He has always been very dedicated to baseball, looking to help players improve on and off the field and making sure everyone was happy. I’ve had the pleasure to learn from him in two ways, as he was not only my coach, but my Advisor as well, and he has always welcomed me and others with open arms. From the bottom of all our hearts, thank you so much Mr. Cooper for everything you have done for us. It will always be appreciated. We hope to see you often and wish you the best of luck in your new position.

Mr. Cooper graciously answered some questions posed by the Cougar Chronicle:

What aspects will you miss most about working at Barrack?

I will miss the personal relationships that were formed with each student and colleague. I will miss coaching the cross country and baseball teams and representing Barrack in the great sports community.

What were some of your favorite memories made at Barrack?

There have been many fantastic memories. A few that stand out:

  • Our first time playing Kohelet at the Wells Fargo Center when we had over 1,000 people attend

  • Sitting with my kids at the Middle School Musical -- Lion King

  • Baseball's walk-off win vs New Foundations

  • Boys and Girls Basketball TCISL Championship wins in 2020

  • My Advisory group

  • Pep Rallies

  • Athletic/Hall of fame Ceremonies

What do you plan to implement from Barrack at Shipley?

I hope to instill the same confidence that our coaches give our students and bring that to Shipley -- taking a personal interest in each student; and to start an athletic Hall of Fame and help students achieve their goal of playing college sports

What advice would you like to give to everyone at Barrack?

Continue to work hard and aim for excellence -- not perfection. Excellence is a journey and not a destination. Take on adversity with confidence and put your teammates first. It is a privilege to wear the Barrack uniform; do so with pride, heart and hustle.

As Mr. Cooper departs Barrack, we welcome a new Athletic Director, Johnny Bistline. Johnny has been our Athletic Trainer for the past five years and is known around our community for his kindness and great work. We couldn’t be more excited to welcome him to this new opportunity at the school, as he has already done so much for our student athletes to make sure everyone can play safely. Thank you for all your hard work so far. We’re all looking forward to seeing you excel in your new position.


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