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CHAPEL HILL - John Moon of Eastern Alamance High School and Debbie Philyaw of Jones High School are the recipients of the fifth annual Toby Webb Coach of the Year Award given by the North Carolina High School Athletic Association.
The two outstanding coaches will be recognized at the NCHSAA Annual Meeting on May 6 at the Smith Center on the campus of the University of North Carolina.
The Webb Award is made possible through the generosity of gifts from individuals and companies through the NCHSAA Endowment and annually recognizes an
outstanding male and female coach. To be eligible for the award, a coach must be nominated by school personnel at the NCHSAA member school where he or she coaches, to have coached for a minimum of 10 years, and have made major contributions to the success of high school athletics at the school, in the community and beyond.
Moon has been at Eastern Alamance for the past 25 years after beginning his career at the middle school level and then spending three years at Eastern Guilford. He has been the athletic director at Eastern Alamance for 25 years, head men's basketball coach for 18 years and also served as head baseball coach for seven years.
A graduate of Walter Williams High School in Burlington and Elon College, he is Eastern's all-time leader in terms of basketball coaching victories. He has previously been recognized on several occasions with NCHSAA awards, including the Eight Who Make A Difference Homer Thompson Award, and received the Braveheart Award from the North Carolina Athletic Directors Association. Moon is also a past president of the North Carolina Coaches Association.
In addition to all his accolades and involvement in coaching and related organizations, Moon has donated over 800 hours over the last four years as a reserve deputy sheriff in Alamance County. After his wife of 33 years, Pattie, committed suicide in 2006 he started teaching suicide prevention classes to regional law enforcement officers through a local mental health agency.
Philyaw has served 23 years as a head women's basketball coach at Jones, to go with 17 years of softball, three years of volleyball and a year as athletic trainer. Her basketball teams have qualified for the state playoffs 18 times. She has received numerous Coach of the Year awards and was an assistant coach for the East in the North Carolina Coaches Association East-West all-star game.
She has been very involved in the NCHSAA's student services program, participating in the Student Athlete Summer Institute (SASI) for 15 years.
In addition to teaching at Jones Senior, Debbie also volunteers as a firefighter and EMT attendant in the town of Comfort and at athletic events. She is a member of the Jones County Emergency Medical Services Advisory Committee, ensuring proper procedures are followed and personnel receive appropriate training.
"John and Debbie are dedicated professionals who epitomize in many ways the role of coaches and the far-reaching impact they have," said NCHSAA executive director Davis Whitfield. "They are most deserving of this recognition and receiving the prestigious Toby Webb Award is a credit to their service and dedication to young people."
The awards are given in honor of Toby Webb, a member of the NCHSAA Hall of Fame who was an outstanding coach as well as a principal and superintendent. He helped turn Albemarle into a football power and posted a brilliant 103-18-6 mark as a head coach there.