Tom Corbin—Athlete, Coach, and Ski Enthusiast
When Tom Corbin arrived in Anchorage in 1971, he had just graduated from Western State College with a teaching certificate and had landed a job as a P.E. teacher at the new Service-Hanshew School. A top cross-country skier, vying for a spot on the National Team while working full-time and raising a young family, he immersed himself in Anchorage’s Nordic ski scene. Within a few years, Coach Corbin had helped build the Service ski trail, nurtured the Service High cross country running and ski teams into the top team in the state, and coached many a young athlete toward success both athletically and in life. He continued coaching at Service, East, and Bartlett throughout his 30-year teaching career, often battling challenges from school bureaucracy, budget cuts, and lack of administrative support. A coach for life, Tom continues to cheer on and support Alaska athletes as they strive to attain their goals.
After retirement from teaching, Coach Corbin continued competing, garnering many achievements as a master’s level racer. Multiple joint replacements and other health challenges would have side-lined many aging athletes, yet Tom continues to be resilient in his seventies, getting out in the mountains and on skis at every opportunity.
Cross country skiing has been a focal point in his life, and Tom has shared that love of sport enthusiastically with everyone he has encountered, no matter their level of achievement or age. Tom Corbin credits the many volunteers, trailblazers, track setters, coaches, and athletes he has worked with for creating the vibrant Anchorage ski community he loves. Tom has aspired to live up to the example set by his college coach and mentor Sven Wiik.