As a basketball coach, Jimmy Hires built Richmond Hill High School into a state powerhouse in the early 1990s.
Now, after serving close to 20 years as the Richmond Hill High School athletic director, and more than three decades as a teacher and coach, Hires is retiring as AD.
He plans to continue teaching part time at the high school, as well as continuing his duties as the head coach of the RHHS track and cross country teams."There comes a time after 37 years of teaching where you have to slow down a bit," Hires said. "I’ve enjoyed working with all the coaches and Dr. (RHHS Principal Charles) Spann, but it’s just time to make a change."
Spann said the AD responsibilities will be "absorbed within the present administration." Last year, longtime high school coach Wade Wright was promoted to vice principal, which may prove to be a plus in this transition.
Hires has a decorated past as an athletic coach, highlighted by his run as Wildcat head boys basketball coach in the 1980’s and ‘90s with nearly 700 varsity wins. Before retiring from basketball in 2004, Hires led teams to the state title in 1988, 1993 and 1994. In addition, he notched 12 region titles, one state runner up and one final four appearance.
"Coach Jimmy Hires has been synonymous with athletics in Richmond Hill for the past three decades," Spann said. "He is known among his peers as the kind of coach who will ‘take his team and whip your team and can then take your team and whip his team.’ Widely known for his intensity and competitive spirit, it can also be said that his players say they never misunderstood him; he had a voice that could be clearly heard from the gym to Kings Ferry on any game night. He might have been loud but he is a gentle giant, always willing to help out, always willing to help a child in need, never harboring ill will toward anyone - the kind of fellow that legends are made of."