Get to know Tigers’ Head Coach Destry Gillette

Check out this brief Q&A with Tigers’ Head Coach Destry Gillette and what he brings from the outside in.

Where did the name Destry come from?

Destry came from a 1930 western novel written by Max Brand called Destry Rides Again.  It was made into a couple of movies: Destry Rides Again in 1939 with James Stewart and Marlene Dietrich and the movie Destry in 1954 with Audie Murphy and Mari Blanchard.  My mom was a big James Stewart fan, hence Destry James Gillette.

Where are you from?/Where else have you lived?/Native of Colorado?

I was born in Sioux Falls, S.D.  I went to 17 different schools for the first 12 years of schooling. I have lived in Colorado on and off for more than 40 years, most recently since 2000. I also lived in Lakewood, Denver, Aurora, Westminster, and Parker.  I also have lived in Cheyenne, Wyo., Santa Fe, N.M., Omaha, N.E., Garmish-Partenkirchen Germany, and Nassau, Bahamas. 

Do you have kids? How many? What ages?  

I have two daughters, Amanda (age 13) and Morgan (age 11)

Do you have a “real” job? Doing what?

I do risk management, compliance, and am audit consultant focused in information technology.  I primarily focus on process and controls assessments and compliance/risk management assessments within various industries.

What three words would your friends use to describe you?

Honest, Direct, Big-Hearted..

How did you find Australian Rules Football? 

An Aussie I worked with at PriceWaterhouseCoopers (Pete Treyvaud – Bulldog) said I should come try it in 2000.  I loved it from the first kick.

What is your footy experience/background (number of years/position played)?

I played 2000-2008, 2011-2012, 2014, 2016 (4 retirements – Brett Favre style).  I was primarily full forward but also forward pocket, center half forward, ruck, and fullback.  Unfortunately, I have had three knee surgeries from footy (left: 2006 ACL/MCL – patellar tendon, 2006 MCL/Meniscus; right: 2016 MCL/Meniscus).  

What is your favorite footy memory as a player? 

Winning 2003 USAFL nationals (div 1 and first title for me), winning 2007 nationals (div 4 (div 1 also won), and second place in 2014 (div 4). Then there was the reunion at nationals in 2014 playing with many of the players from early 2000s and with some guys I hadn’t seen in 10 years who flew in from Oz.

What are your hobbies outside of footy? 

Primarily my daughters’ activities, then golf, skiing, and basketball.

What is it about the Tigers that keeps you coming back for more?

I am honored and thrilled to be able to give back to a sport I really enjoy.  The Tigers have won me over with their determination and grit to bring a second team to the Denver area, and I am extremely proud to be a part of it!

How do you think sports help shape girls’ and women’s lives?

I think that sports are a wonderful way to work on self, team, and community.  It is an opportunity to challenge not only what others think you can do but also challenge yourself. I love when someone gets a great handball and kick or their first goal and recognizes the hard work they have put in has just paid off and they can continue to improve.  The same thing goes for my daughters in their activities, including volleyball, theater, and cooking/baking.

Which Tigers’ core value speaks the most to you? (Tenacity, Integrity, Grit, Empowerment, Respect, Sportsmanship)?

I think all of them are wonderful tenants to always try and display.  Similarly, after thinking three long years about what tattoo I wanted to get, I decided to put three Chinese characters on my left shoulder signifying Honor, Courage, and Respect.  Anyway, my rationale was that if you can continually strive to actively achieve those three things, your life should always have some good things going. 

What are your pet peeves? 

Lying, tardiness, lack of effort,losing, and my daughters always thinking they know more about math than me 😆 

What song always gets you out on the dance floor?

Time after Time by Cyndi Lauper

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