Pete Walker has been involved in the game of football his entire life. As a player and then a coach, the man is synonymous with the sport.
Born and raised in the Glades, Walker grew up surrounded by the agriculture community of Clewiston. “My dad was in agriculture,” said Walker. “He was an Everglades Farm Equipment [and] tractor salesman for many years.”
Currently, Walker is the athletic director and head football coach at Clewiston High School.
Clewiston High School is the epitome of ‘Friday Night Lights.’
“The community is very involved,” explained Walker. Having previously retired from coaching, Walker credits the kids for keeping him in the game. “I like the opportunity to help a young man become a great man. When he looks back on playing football for us here at Clewiston, I want him to say I’m a better man because of that.”
Walker’s commitment to the team is paternal. He helps set the foundation up for success beyond the football field.
“We talk to these kids all the time about being good husbands and fathers and citizens and making a difference in this world and earning what you get in life,” he said. “To me, that’s important that they hear those things. And that’s what keeps me coming out here every day.”
Walker’s investments into the team have not gone unnoticed. The Clewiston Football team received an award this year from KIA Motor Company called ‘Keep the Game Going.’ Instead of airing a Super Bowl ad, the company decided to give back to support high schools that struggled during the pandemic.
“They selected ten schools in the whole country to donate to,” explained Walker. “We’re really thankful and blessed by that.”
The football program also benefits greatly from the investments of the local community.
Walker says the business community is one of the biggest supporters of the Clewiston High School athletics program. Specifically, he credits “U.S. Sugar, for sure. Like they do many other places here in the community and surrounding area. We probably couldn’t run the first-class operation in athletics that we do without them.”