Mansfield Sports

New MISD athletic director has local roots

Philip O'Neal, center, is shown in his days as the athletic director for Weatherford ISD.
Philip O'Neal, center, is shown in his days as the athletic director for Weatherford ISD. Star-Telegram Archive

After Debbie Weems announced her retirement earlier this year, the Mansfield ISD set out to find its first new athletic director in two decades. It landed on Philip O’Neal, most recently athletic director of the Fort Bend ISD, southwest of Houston.

O’Neal was approved at the May 24 school board meeting and officially takes his new office July 1.

“Mansfield ISD is a district with great tradition and leadership, “ O’Neal said in a Mansfield ISD press release. “[Superintendent] Dr. Vaszauskas is building a team of leaders that is working with a strong school board continuing to take MISD to new heights. I am excited to be part of this great team and look forward to serving the student athletes and coaches of MISD.”

At Fort Bend, the seventh largest district in Texas, O’Neal oversaw 11 high schools.

O’Neal also has Metroplex ties. He is a Dallas native and worked in the Weatherford ISD for 20 years as a coach, assistant director of athletics, director of athletics and executive director of athletics. O’Neal has degrees from Wayland Baptist University and Tarleton State University.

“I believe in servant leadership,” O’Neal said. “I must serve our coaches and provide them the resources they needed for success, within reason, so they can better serve our athletes in achieving academic and athletic success.”

Superintendent Vaszauskas added in the press release, “Philip O’Neal has a reputation as one of the finest athletic directors in Texas. We are fortunate that he has agreed to serve the MISD in this role. Coach Debbie Weems has been a statewide leader in her role as athletic director, and we thank her for her service to our district.”