Eight years down a career path he had selected when he was a high school student, the road curved somewhat and led Doug Patterson right back to his alma mater – Vernon High School.
While he grew up in the First Methodist Church, where his father was the pastor, Doug was drawn to the field of education.
“I became a teacher because it is a ‘mission field’/‘ministry opportunity’ in-and-of itself,” Doug explained. “I had wonderful education experiences in this very district as a student. Following in the footsteps of ‘the Mount Rushmores’ – Suzie Byars, San Jones, Judy Heatly and Barbara Jo Hughes -- of our VHS English Department is humbling for me.”
For most of his 20-year teaching career, the English II and English III teacher has also been a coach. Doug was a teacher and head boys basketball coach at Clyde for four years and also served four years at Jim Ned as the head boys basketball coach and a teacher. This is his twelfth year with Vernon ISD and during that time he has had two stints as the Lions head basketball coach, with the last being the 2021-22 school year.
“I was blessed with great athletic opportunities thanks to people like Coach Eric Johns, who was not only my head coach when I was playing basketball, when I was his assistant coach here, and is my mentor, but who was also the best man in our wedding,” Patterson said.
After graduating from VHS in 1998, Doug went on to McMurry University where he graduated in 2002 with a bachelor of science degree in multidisciplinary studies II, specializing in Spanish and physical education. While he has taught in other school districts, Doug is partial to being here.
“I like teaching at VISD because since I am from here, I know how to relate to the students on multiple levels,” he explained.
Along with representing the Lions on the sports fields, Doug also represented Vernon in the fine arts while a student at VHS, as he was a member of the choir.
“I would like to bring our choir program because it afforded me many opportunities in college and on beyond,” he said.
Doug and his wife, Kelly, a VHS graduate and a VISD teacher/coach, have been married for 12 years and have three daughters – Praylee, 10; Macelyn, 7; and Jynsen 4.
Doug enjoys reading the Bible, praying and worshiping with his family every day, spending his free time supporting his daughters in their athletic endeavors, singing, working out and eating.