As a part of a unique program called “Play It Smart” funded by the National Football Foundation, Jim promoted academic and athletic success. His primary responsibility was interfacing between teachers, students, parents, and coaches, but his role became much more.
Football players attended study halls under his supervision and were encouraged to participate in many community service projects. Under the program, players’ grades improved, which increased academic and athletic eligibility. "I had the privilege of working with these young men as I saw their goals go higher than just finishing high school," recalls Jim.
"None of this could have happened without the support and teamwork of the teachers, school administrators, and ultimately district leadership." During the 2000 season, 15 players made the honor roll and nearly all of his students graduated from high school. Many went on to college, which was Jim’s personal goal. “Today, the district continues to move in a positive direction where ‘all means all,’" says Jim. "As a grandfather of six - one of whom is a Jeffco student - I want to see continued strong leadership and consistent support for all students and teachers in Jeffco.”