Leading as Coaches and Teachers

Educational leadership isn’t just for the classroom. For Kevin Kendro, Shawn Baker, and Kevin Pirri it extends to the field as well. All three are employed by Frederick County Public Schools (FCPS), Kendro as the Supervisor of Athletics and Extracurricular Activities and Baker and Pirri as head coaches as well as teachers. Beyond teaching and coaching, what do all three have in common? All are using Hood College’s M.S. in Educational Leadership to support their careers and goals. Kendro is a 2007 graduate of the program, which he credits with helping him make connections and get the degree that he needed for his current position. For Pirri and Baker, who entered the program in the spring of 2018, the program was highly recommended from their peers and administration, including Kendro.


Kevin Kendro 1Kevin Kendro is a Frederick native, who graduated from Governor Thomas Johnson High School is 1997. While at TJ he played in the 1997 All-State Baseball game at Camden Yards. He played baseball at Shepherd University, where he got his B. A. in Secondary Education – Health and Physical Education in 2001. After graduating, he returned to FCPS where he worked as teacher, varsity coach, and school athletic director, attaining his current position in 2013. At the same time, he came to Hood for his Educational Leadership degree. He chose Hood not just because of its proximity to home and work, but because of “strong recommendations.” While in the program, “I enjoyed the personal connections with my professors who I felt really cared about me and my growth as an educational leader. I also enjoyed having FCPS administrators teaching some of my courses.” His wife, Jenn Kendro, followed him in the program and earned her Hood Educational Leadership degree in 2011. Kevin and Jenn live in Frederick County with their two children and he enjoys swimming (at Hood!) and supporting his favorite baseball team, the New York Yankees.


BakerFor Shawn Baker, Kendro’s recommendation was a major reason he came to Hood. One of Baker’s eventual goals is to follow Kendro into the position of Athletic Director. He is currently a Physical Education teacher at Brunswick Elementary and the varsity soccer coach at Brunswick High as well as an assistant coach for two FC Frederick soccer teams. A native of Brunswick who went to the schools he now teaches and coaches at, Shawn says “being back at Brunswick teaching and coaching has been such an amazing experience over the past 4 years.” He attended Frostburg State University, where he got his B.A. in Health and Physical Education and played soccer. Baker came to Hood for his M.S. because of recommendation from Kendro, as well as Baker’s own family members, several of which have degrees from the college. Like Kendro, Baker has “enjoyed working with current and former FCPS employees and administrators, working with the staff and current students at Hood that have first-hand experience of Frederick County, I know they will be preparing the best they can for my future as an FCPS employee.” Baker also plays on a semi-pro soccer team for FC Frederick and enjoys having home games on the Hood campus!


PirriUnlike Kendro and Baker, Kevin Pirri is not a native of Frederick. He grew up in Pennsylvania and attended Millersville University in Lancaster where he played two years of college football and got his B.A. in Technology Education with a minor in Athletic Coaching. In 2013, he moved to Frederick and started working at Thomas Johnson Middle School. He then switched to Frederick High School, where he currently teaches Woodworking, Architectural Engineering and Design, and Foundations of Technology. He’s been the head football at FHS since 2015. He came to Hood both because of recommendations from colleagues and the options offered. Pirri explains “as a Masters programs, Educational Leadership offers a lot of opportunities which allow me to have some open options when I complete the program”. As someone who is not a Frederick native, he feels that “coming from out of state for a job is not easy, and in coaching and teaching you need to know people for personal and professional growth. Through Hood I have already had several conversations and created relationships in my short time that will help me with my future.” He lives in Frederick with his wife Lauren and one-year old son Logan and looks forward to more opportunities.


For Baker and Pirri, becoming head coaches at their relatively young ages is quite an accomplishment. Kendro is proud of both and feels they both have bright futures in the classroom and on the field. We look forward to seeing all of them as part of the FCPS and Hood communities!