Pinewood names new football coach
After a competitive national search, Pinewood Preparatory School has selected Michael Wright to lead its football program.
Wright replaces Jody Kafina, who served as the Panther coach for two seasons.
In addition to his head coaching duties, Wright will work in the admissions office and teach in the physical education department.
“We are thrilled to have an independent school educator of Michael's caliber as part of our faculty team next year,” Pinewood Head of School Steve Mandell said. “Throughout this search process, he became the clear choice for Pinewood. His successful career in independent school education and his reputation for character and integrity contributed greatly to his selection. We are confident that he will be a leader for our football program, and a tremendous member of our faculty.”
A native of Bath, S. C., Wright attended boarding school at the Kent School in Connecticut. He earned his Bachelor of Arts from St. Lawrence University in New York, where he earned four varsity letters in football and two in basketball. Wright is a member of both the Kent School and St. Lawrence University Halls of Fame.
Upon graduating, he was invited to try out for the Miami Dolphins as a free agent.
With a career spanning 23 years, Michael has worked in various administrative capacities, coached numerous sports, and taught at both the middle and high school level. He has spent the past decade at the Flint Hill School in Fairfax, Va. At Flint Hill, he restarted the football program, leading the team to four league championships, four appearances in the Virginia state semi-finals, and one appearance in the state championships. In addition to football, Wright also coached basketball and track while at Flint Hill.
Prior to Flint Hill, Wright held positions at several notable independent institutions, including a ten-year tenure at King Lowe Heyward Thomas School (KLHT) in Connecticut. Wright has coached and mentored many college football players who have gone on to play at places like Virginia Tech, James Madison, Cornell and the University of Richmond. In 2006, he was named the Redskins High School Coach of the Year, and was twice named the Sun-Gazette Coach of the Year.
Pinewood has also announced that Frank Cuda is joining the school as director of football operations. Cuda is a familiar face in football and education in Summerville, having served Dorchester District Two in a variety of teaching and coaching roles for many years. Cuda served as an assistant coach at Pinewood this past year, and will support Coach Wright this coming year in this newly created role, focusing on all aspects of logistics and team operations.