Jim Cleveland, RCS c/o ’90
One of the RCS goals to #CelebrateRCS in our 50th anniversary is to connect with RCS Alumni and see what God has been doing in their lives since high school graduation.
As part of the interview, Dr. Hearne asked for Mr. Cleveland to share his thoughts on this month’s theme verse 2 Timothy 4:1-2, “I charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus, who is to judge the living and the dead, and by his appearing and his kingdom: preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”
Mr. Cleveland shared: One of the quotes I love in coaching athletes can be summarized this way; “Athletes are developed in the offseason and discovered in season”. That means if you put the work in during the offseason then you can expect a dramatic improvement in your performance when the season arrives. Likewise in our spiritual walk we never know when we are going to be called on to share wisdom from God’s word, or provide encouragement, or correction of someone who may not be thinking Biblically. If we have not put in the time in God’s word or undergone the training or sharpening that comes through fellowship with other believers then we will not be ready when the “game is on the line”. So get ready!
When did you begin attending RCS and what year did you graduate?
Mr. Cleveland: I was an RCS “lifer” attending RCS K-12 and graduating in 1990
Who was your favorite RCS Teacher and why?
Mr. Cleveland: So many favorites! I had Miss Orluck in her first year of teaching at RCS. Mr. Gillette was my middle school history teacher. Mr Edington was my high school Bible teacher. Mr. Kady taught me math in junior high. Others who might not have been my favorites at the time but made a big impact on my life would include Mr. Bromer and Mr. Yovino. Both of these men provided the discipline and structure I needed especially when I was a less than compliant 8th and 9th grader.
What activities did you enjoy participating in while a student?
Mr. Cleveland: Surprisingly, I was all about athletics! I played sports all three seasons throughout high school (soccer, basketball and baseball, and then summer baseball). However, my family had a musical background so I did sing in the choir and play trumpet.
As a student what did you love most about RCS?
Mr. Cleveland: My best memories involved playing sports. I just enjoyed being a part of a team and competing and traveling together whether for tournaments or road games. Back then it seemed like multiple teams from different sports were always scheduled together to play on the same day against the same school. This meant bus trips with the volleyball team and soccer teams or the baseball and softball teams which built some strong support and school spirit within our sports teams. I would also say that I was a part of an RCS “all time best” type class (1990). So many great friendships and memories were built during my high school years. . . Unfortunately that is as far back as I can remember at my advanced age!
What did you do after graduating from RCS?
Mr. Cleveland: After graduation I attended Liberty University where I also played baseball. After graduation, I thought that I would pursue a career in the FBI. However, the Lord had other plans. I was married the summer after graduation and then one month later started working at RCS. I thought it was a one year experiment but I quickly found out that teaching and coaching was something I really enjoyed and signed up for year two and then year three. . . and then year 26!
Why did you return to RCS as a teacher and now an administrator?
Mr. Cleveland: One of the main reasons I returned back to RCS originally was the opportunity to coach the baseball team at Redwood. Baseball had always been a passion of mine and I realized that if I were to pursue a career in the FBI my involvement in baseball would end. In that first year I was given the opportunity to also teach elementary P.E. which I absolutely loved. One of the things that kept me coming back year after year to teaching and coaching and now as an administrator was the opportunity to develop meaningful relationships with the students that have continued well after students have moved on from RCS. I would also say I could not have continued at coaching as long as I have without a tremendously supportive wife!