For almost 30 years, Coach Allan Kreuzburg P’14,’17 has embraced the ideals of servant leadership as a teacher, coach, mentor, and role model.
He often takes on the hardest, least desirable, most thankless, and often least visible duties at Cardigan—the kitchen pit, the laundry, the garbage and recycling. Daily he has demonstrated the mantra that he has taught countless individuals:
Do your job right.
Do your job to the best of your ability.
Do your job until it is done.
Despite, or perhaps because of, the countless titles that Coach K has had Cardigan, he has also been a champion for others. He spots peaks for the people around him—ones they thought insurmountable. He leads them to the base and tells them not only can they climb that mountain, but they will. They may balk and complain, but he is persistent and he won’t give up. And eventually, when a boy accomplishes something for the first time, we get to see something exceptionally rare…Coach K smiles…and then, beaming, he says, “I knew you could do it.”
It is for this reason, and many more, that as Coach K departed campus this spring to pursue other adventures, we took the time to recognize him for his service to the Cardigan community. First, in the Wakely Fitness Center, the wrestling room will now be named the Kreuzburg Wrestling Room, forever linking his name to the room where he taught so many young men the value of hard work, the perseverance to achieve the unachievable, and the importance of serving others. Second, the School named Coach K an honorary alumnus, and he received his tie along with the graduating Class of 2023, underscoring the invaluable impact he has had on this community and this School. He may be leaving Cardigan, but his legacy and impact will resonate for many years to come.
Quotes from Cardigan Alumni
It’s very hard to put into words how much wrestling meant to us. It was super impactful and we’re really thankful to Coach K for helping to shape us into the people we are today. Mateo ’22 and Diego ’20 Escalante
The values Coach K imprinted, and embodied, and the direction that he provided on so many different occasions during that period of my life were so monumental and transformative. I’m so incredibly grateful for everything he stood for and everything that he was and chose to show up as every day. Garrett Plekenpol ’14
Thank you, Coach K, for instilling in me the qualities of character, commitment, and courage. Thank you for teaching me that the limits that we give ourselves are just delusions. Thank you for holding me accountable, even when I didn’t want to be. Griffin Drescher ’05
Coach K has been an exemplary role model of hard work and how it should be done. Dong Hyun “Vio” Chae ’13
Quotes from Current and Past Faculty
Mr. Kreuzburg is a bricklayer with the perspective of a builder of cathedrals. He is always most concerned with the future adults his students and athletes are becoming. This is about that. The bricks might be math problems, push-ups, or doing a job until it’s done; the cathedrals are the young men who develop integrity, respect, compassion, and courage. And with that perspective, Mr. Kreuzburg is a master craftsman. Danielle Fedele, Current Faculty
Coach K is the heart and soul of Cardigan. When I see him, I pull my shoulders back, my back gets straighter, and I walk taller. He embodies everything that is good and right on our campus and helps us all be our best selves. Chris Kenny, Current Faculty
I refer to this Kreuzburg motto all the time: “At Cardigan we don’t say ‘I can’t’; we say, ‘I will try.’” Marty Wennik, Current Faculty
Coach K is a devotee of truth, order, and goodness, and an authority on the art of fostering this commitment in young men. He is the embodiment of saying and doing that which is right, however unpopular. In addition to his moral compass, his success is rooted in authenticity. He carries himself with conviction amongst both the boys and his colleagues, earning the respect of both. Kevin Franco, Director of Music
I have always thought of Kreuz as a three-headed superhero. First, he cares. Second, he has integrity. Third, he possesses a quiet intensity that reflects how much he values the tasks he sets himself, the people he works with, and the students he has inspired along the way. Andrew Cook, Former Faculty
Whenever I find myself in a tough situation, I ask myself, “How would Coach K handle it?” And that has guided me successfully through many instances. Gus Means, Summer Session Faculty
Selfless, humble, committed. Mr. Kreuzburg is the epitome of a servant-leader, putting others before himself. This is not only when it is convenient or glamorous; in fact, it rarely is. He literally rolls up his sleeves to do the work because it needs to be done for the community, and for the boys. He lives the Cardigan mission and Core Values with his whole being. He would never say, “Look at me,” but we should all look at him as a role model. Austin Hannis, Former Faculty