James Clark: Hall of Fame Profile


Dr. James Clark, 2015 Inductee into the Thornton Hall of Fame

Dr. James Clark, beloved TTHS teacher and administrator began his Thornton Township High School career as chair of the Speech Department in 1972. Ten years later, he was promoted to assistant principal, a position he held until 1986.

“I worked with many great staff—both professional and support—who really cared about the students with whom they worked,” says Dr. Clark.

“During my time at Thornton, I taught many extremely talented students who have succeeded wherever their career path took them.”

His professional life as a teacher began in 1965 as speech, drama and English instructor at Marion Community High School in Marion, Indiana. Later, after leaving TTHS, Dr. Clark served as the principal at Lockport Township High School, assistant superintendent for education services at Joliet Township High School, where he was eventually promoted to superintendent, a post he held until 2002. During that time, he also was an adjunct instructor at both Aurora University and Governors’ State University.

► Dr. James Clark is a 2015 Thornton Hall of Fame inductee, to be honored at Alumni Day, Friday, May 8. Learn more, make a donation, buy a ticket to the event.

As befits a member of the Thornton faculty, Dr. Clark was highly education, holding a B.S. from Manchester College in North Manchester, Indiana; an M.S. from Purdue University; and both a certificate in Educational Administration a D.Ed. from the University of Illinois.

Dr. Clark’s civic involvement was exemplary, with membership or leadership positions through the Southwest Suburban area:

  • CASA of Cook County
  • Unitarian Church of Evanston Board of Trustees Secretary
  • Condominium Association Treasurer
  • Rotary Clubs of Joliet and Lockport
  • Joliet Junior College Foundation Board Member
  • Former Member District 148 (Cook County) Board of Education, 1976-1986
  • Former Member Joliet Region Chamber of Commerce & Industry Board of Directors
  • Silver Cross Hospital Community Trustees – Executive Board Chairperson
  • JACOB – Joliet Area Church-based Organized Body
  • Crime Stoppers of Will County – Board of Directors – President
  • United Way of Will County – Education Division Co-Chairperson
  • Rialto School for the Arts – Advisory Committee
  • First Presbyterian Church Session – Human Resources Council Chairperson
  • Big Brothers/Big Sisters Advisory Council
  • Greater Joliet Area YMCA Board of Directors Member
  • Lewis University Education Advisory Committee

The Thornton Hall of Fame induction will look great on Dr. Clark’s award shelf, along with these major honors:

  • CASA of Cook County Spirit Award – 2012
  • Zora Zorich Foundation/Lewis University Lifetime Achievement Award – 2002
  • JACOB Community Ally Award – 2001
  • Selected as an Outstanding Young Man of America
  • Listed in Who’s Who in the Midwest
  • Friend of Education
  • American Heart Association Joliet Area – Volunteer of the Year Award – 2000 and 2001

Summing up his TTHS experiences, Dr. Clark says: “Great times, great people, great students at a wonderful place to work.”