Co-Director & Coach
WHITNEY KING COONS
A former student of Bethany Evans Tolley, Whitney started twirling at the age of 6. She also benefited from the instruction of Ann Nita McDonald. She competed in local, Texas State, Southwest Regional and National Competitions, winning over 100 titles throughout her career. Whitney moved on to field twirling and was the 2004-2007 University of Texas Feature Twirler.
Whitney now enjoys spending time with her sweet baby boy, Callum, her husband Brad, working for Atlassian as an IT HR Manager, and teaching twirling lessons in the evenings and on the weekends. Whitney is also an NBTA Certified judge as well as the Judge for the State UIL Twirling every Spring.
A former student of Major Margaret Mann, Ashley started twirling at age 12 and competed in NBTA competitions into college winning many State & Regional titles and placing in several National events. Ashley is also an NBTA & AAU Certified Judge who has judged local contests, out-of-state contests, AAU Jr. Olympics, High School auditions, Canadian Nationals, and NBTA Nationals (AYOP).
During the day, Ashley is the Colorguard Director at Hutto High School and La Grange High School. When not teaching or judging, Ashley spends as much time as possible with her two adorable children, Jason and Hailey, and her husband, Jay. Ashley also has an MBA from Texas State University.
Deb Akins Herbster began twirling when she was 10 with Diane Gunnels & the Royalettes.
She is a former College Miss Majorette of America and X-Strut silver medalist from the first International baton competition held in Holland. Deb has been a Twirling Ambassador and chaperone in Peru, and has taught baton all over the US and in Switzerland. She is an NBTA & AAU certified judge.
For 18 years, Deb taught Marketing in both N & S Carolina. After moving to TX, Deb switched to elementary school. She worked 2 years with special needs students and now works in PE. Deb has been married to her husband, Brad, for 21 years. She was a Feature Twirler for the University of South Carolina and has a Master’s in Marketing Ed.
A former student of Gina Adams Martin of Midland, TX and Alysha Depp of Dowlingtown, PA, Tarabeth Echols Gertsch began twirling when she was 4 years old. She holds four National Titles, is a three time AAU Jr. Olympic Gold Medalist, former Miss Majorette of Texas and College Miss Majorette of Arkansas, and was a Featured Majorette for the University of Arkansas Razorback Marching Band from 2005-2007, where she got the opportunity to twirl in the SEC Championship and Capital One Bowl.
Tarabeth is an interior designer for Workplace Resource Group, a Herman Miller furniture dealer out of Carrollton, TX where she designs commercial office space. She lives with her husband, Michael, and two boys, Locklin and Lennon in Leander, TX.
Twirl ATX, LLC, was founded in the summer of 2013 by Co-Directors Ashley Wood & Whitney Coons. While they had known of each other during their competition years, neither had stayed in touch out of school. After a chance meeting brought them back together, they decided that Austin did not have enough of a twirling presence, and created Twirl ATX. The first class was held on October 1, 2013 with just three students. By the end of their fourth season in the Summer of 2017, Twirl ATX had grown to have 20+ competitive twirlers, an intro skills program, and three performance teams.
The Twirl ATX Coaches feel strongly in supporting their students as they grow not only in the sport, but as people and athletes. From offering team building, conditioning programs, development classes, and time management and interview sessions, our goal is to make sure our students earn every opportunity they can to better themselves, on and off the competition floor. For more information on our programs, visit our Programs page or you can Contact Us.
DEB AKINS HERBSTER
Co-Director & Coach
ASHLEY CRAFT WOOD
A former student of Nancy Eisenhauer and long time member of the Corpus Christi Stingerettes, Lisa Lawson began twirling when she was only three years olds. During her competition years, she held State & Regional pageant titles, and then went on to be a Feature Twirler for the University of Houston.
Lisa has a fascinating job as a Lead Forensic Autopsy Technician. She also lives with her fiance and her fur babies.