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Charles Auto Family’s Getting to Know: James A. Garfield’s Jim Pfleger

Charles Auto Family’s Getting to Know: James A. Garfield’s Jim Pfleger


By Tom Nader
Publisher and Editor


Q: Hometown?
A: Garrettsville, Ohio.


Q: High school?
A: James A. Garfield High School (Class of 1999). Played football and track and field.

Q: College?
A: Kent State University (Class of 2005). Bachelor’s Degree in Physical Education. Master’s Degree in School Health Education (2010); Post Master’s in School Administration (Ashland University, 2015).

Q: Current occupation?
A: Recently completed my 10th year as the assistant principal and athletic director at James A. Garfield.

Q: What inspired you to go into education and also to coach?
A: I always enjoyed working with younger athletes when I was playing, and I felt coaching and teaching was a natural profession for me.

A: What makes working at Garfield special to you?
A: Being an alumni, athletics at Garfield have always held a special place in my heart. Being a coach/athletic director allows me to have a direct impact on student-athletes from my hometown.

Q: Who was your biggest influence/mentor as a coach?
A: My two biggest mentors as a coach have been John Bennett and Mike Stiles. Both individuals gave me opportunities as a young coach and helped to shape the coach I am. Also, my parents played a huge role. They always encouraged me to pursue the profession I wanted to and supported me along the way.

Q: Funny story nobody would believe from your coaching career?
A: I won’t go into specifics, but as a young track coach some of the older coaches in the old Portage Trail Conference played a good prank on me my second year of coaching when we were out to dinner. They still bring it up to me to this day.

Q: Favorite TV show?
A: Sopranos and Deadwood.

Q: Favorite movie?
A: I’d say JAWS or The Outlaw Josey Whales. I’m a huge fan of old westerns.

Q: Favorite musical artist?
A: Jimmy Buffett (I’ve been to over 30 shows).

Q: Favorite food/meal?
A: BBQ anything .

Q: Best vacation?
A: I just got back from a trip to the Badlands, Yellowstone and Glacier National Park — that’ll be hard to beat.

Q: Shoutout to former teammates?
A: Rob Penney and Josh Fresch .

Q: Favorite motto or quote?
A: Nobody Cares, Work Harder.

Q: Describe your educational philosophy?
A: I’m a strong believer in establishing relationships with our student-athletes and showing them I genuinely care about their success.

Q: Favorite restaurant?
A: Cockeyes BBQ.

Q: Favorite teacher from high school?
A: Tony Strope.

Q: Advice you would give the younger version of yourself?
A: Don’t get frustrated and enjoy the ride.

Q: Favorite coach from your playing days?
A: Former JAG track and field coach John Bennett.

Q: Coaching resume?
A: Garfield High School track and field (2002-09); Aurora High School track and field (2010-11); Garfield High School track and field (2012-present); Garfield football assistant (2002-03); Berkshire football assistant (2004); Southeast football assistant (2006-08); Garfield football assistant (2012).

Q: Favorite sports team?
A: University of Michigan and the Browns.

Q: Favorite athlete then?
A: Tony Boselli.

Q: Favorite athlete now?
A: Former Olympic shot putter Adam Nelson.

Q: First job as a teenager?
A: I was a cook at KFC.

Q: Family member that always gave you the best advice?
A: My parents have always given me great advice and supported me.

Q: Favorite video game?
A: I haven’t played video games since PS1 was out. I was dominant on the old NCAA football.

Q: Favorite candy?
A: Kit Kat.

Q: First car?
A: Chevy Cavalier.

Q: Best friend?
A: My brother Matt.

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