Mr. Hallihan named Joliet Central Principal

Kyle Kopchak, Sports Editor

On February 25, 2015, the Joliet Township school board announced that Shad Hallihan will replace retiring Joliet Central High School principal John Randich as the new Joliet Central principal, effective July 1, 2015. Mr. Hallihan is currently serving as Joliet West Assistant Principal, where he has severed for eight years. Mr. Hallihan works a lot behind the scenes at West; in doing so he has positively impacted thousands of Joliet West students throughout his career. I had an opportunity to sit down with Mr. Hallihan and learn about his career working for JTHS, and his excitement about his new job.

Mr. Hallihan’s relationship with Joliet Township started much earlier than most teachers in the district. He was a graduate from Joliet Township, and after graduating from the University of Illinois, he came back in 1995 to teach English at Joliet Central. Throughout his 19year career with Joliet Township, Mr. Hallihan has held numerous positions such as an English teacher, District Assistant Athletic Director, Joliet West High School Division Chairperson, Joliet West Freshman Academy Coordinator, and finally in 2007 he obtained his current position of Joliet West Assistant Principal. For over eight years, Mr. Hallihan has brought a wealth of knowledge and experience to Joliet West, and he will carry it over to his new position as Joliet Central principal.

Becoming a high school principal is a long process of starting from the bottom and slowly rising through the administrative ranks. With this in mind, Mr. Hallihan said, “I am honored and excited to be named the new Joliet Central principal. I still know many of the teachers at Central and I am excited to get to know the new teachers that have been added since my departure.” When I asked about Mr. Hallihan if he had a vision or goal for Central, he responded by saying, “I want to carry over the same goal we have at West, and really around the district, of giving our students all the needed resources and opportunities to succeed.”

Although Mr. Hallihan is losing the “assistant” in front of his current job title, not much else will be changing from his day-to-day job. He acknowledges that there will be a change in venue, but other than that the biggest adjustment will be the size of the events he is responsible for running. Mr. Hallihan stated, “As a principal it is his job to support students and staff in their academic endeavors, and ensure that the school is being run smoothly and efficiently.” Going from an Assistant Principal will move Mr. Hallihan from working behind the scenes to being the face of Joliet Central High School. Additionally, Mr. Hallihan acknowledges he will face many challenges as Central’s new principal. These challenges include helping struggling and successful students reach their academic potential, reintroducing himself to old Central staff, and introducing himself to new Central staff that he is not familiar with.

Despite our excitement for Mr. Hallihan on his new job, we will be losing out on a great administrator. Throughout his eight years as the Joliet West Assistant Principal, Mr. Hallihan has helped make West a better place. He expressed that he hopes to leave behind the impression that he worked to make Joliet West a better school every year, and he regrets being unable to meet more students on a day-to-day basis. When asked about his favorite Joliet West experience, Mr. Hallihan stated, “It is hard to think of one moment that could describe my experience here at West completely, however recently the ABC 7 fly over was a great experience. It was amazing to see students and staff come together to celebrate our amazing school.” All of us here at Joliet West will miss Mr. Hallihan greatly, and wish him the best at his new job. We also hope that through his experience as a Tiger he can enjoy a great deal of success and help make our district great.