The Green Bay Packers have announced that Toby Golembiewski of Monroe High School in Monroe, Wis., has been named the Packers High School Coach of the Week. The program is presented by Buffalo Wild Wings.
In his eighth year as the varsity head coach at Monroe, Golembiewski has the Cheesemakers currently undefeated in conference play and 4-2 overall this season. This year’s success is a continuation from last year when the Cheesemakers went undefeated on their way to their first WIAA Football State Championship since 1994. Over the past few seasons, Golembiewski wanted to see the team’s reach stretch beyond the field and into the community to raise funds for a greater cause. In October, Golembiewski would regularly see high school players wearing pink, but discovered that many of them didn’t know the color was in support of breast cancer awareness. Having a mother who is a cancer survivor and a sister-in-law who lost her fight to cancer, Golembiewski wanted to highlight the importance of the true meaning behind wearing pink.
“I thought, you know what guys, we are not going to wear any pink, we’re going to put the money where our mouth is, and we’re going to represent people that we know who have gone through the cancer situation and we’re going to take the money from our fundraiser to make a sizable donation towards our cancer charity,” said Golembiewski. “We said, ‘hey you can only have so many sleds, you can only have so many footballs, you can only have so many of these things, we need to do a really good job with this donation, so we upped [the goal] to $5,000, and we set the bar there and that has become another reason why our community supports that fundraiser whether they’re into football or not.”
Over the past couple years, Golembiewski and the Cheesemakers have been able to raise and donate $11,000 to a charity that was selected by their school’s student council, Justice For A Cure.
While the team was having a lot of success on the field last season, Golembiewski had been dealing some medical issues of his own during the second half of the year. Shortly after the team’s state championship, he was diagnosed with colon cancer. This news and the resulting chemotherapy treatments could have understandably sidelined him, but instead the sport of football has been one of the driving factors for him to continue to fight.
“Football is my medicine. When we are doing weight lifting in the offseason, when we are doing practices and games, now I pay for it a little bit afterwards. But when we’re going to clinics — and now I spoke at the WFCA clinic with a pump that was pumping chemo into my body, and I was getting a chemo treatment while I was speaking — when you’re doing football stuff or educating people about football or teaching and working with kids, for me, the energy is incredible and it’s really been my medicine through all of this.”
Golembieski is a strong advocate for everyone to make sure to get their health screenings on time and to not let all of life’s other challenges get in the way of taking care of their personal health. He estimates that he has heard from more than 70 people who have gone in to get screened and have either found something of concern or have received a clean bill of health, but they are happy that they did so after hearing him speak or learning of his diagnosis.
Golembieski continues to coach and be an inspiration to the community and football program. He and his staff oversee a program of 67 players with 40 of them suiting up for the varsity games. His assistant staff includes Tom Witt, Shawn Paulson, Eric Losseneger, Gerry Herbst, Mike Figi, Ryan Paulson and Rob Schilt. Golembiewski and his wife, Jodi, have one son, Max, and one daughter, Sophie.
About the Green Bay Packers High School Coach of the Week Program:
The Packers will recognize one outstanding high school coach as their ‘Coach of the Week’ winner during the 2023 high school football season. Winners are awarded several items and privileges, including a $2,000 donation to the school’s football program from the Green Bay Packers, Buffalo Wild Wings and the NFL Foundation, as well as recognition of the award on packers.com, wissports.net and wifca.org.
Nominations for Coach of the Week should be submitted by 10 a.m. every Monday to Ryan Fencl, Football Outreach Manager, at [email protected]. Please include the nominee’s name, address, school, phone number and reason he/she is deserving of the award.
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