Sensational Seniors – October 2017
Editor’s note: Since starting this column, “Sensational Seniors” back in 2016, Mike McClain has featured many of Jacksonville’s most respected and admired citizens. This month, in honor of Mike’s writing success, his dear friend, Mira Wingfield, thought it was time to “turn the tables” and feature the popular author himself. Mira noted that producing this column took some doing along with the cooperation of Mike’s wife, Kandee McClain! Please join the Review by enjoying this piece on one of Jacksonville’s Sensational Seniors, Mike McClain…
Mike McClain, a fourth-generation Oregonian, was raised on a cattle ranch outside the historic village of Joseph. He attended Joseph schools for twelve years, graduating in 1962. Upon graduation, he entered the University of Oregon, receiving a Bachelor of Arts degree in history in 1966, followed by a year of graduate studies at Louisiana State University and ultimately a Masters of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of Oregon.
He enjoyed a 32-year career in education, teaching in two different school districts for 15 years, and filling several school administrative positions for 17 years. His posts included a ten-year stint as the principal of Crater High School in Central Point and six years as the Superintendent of the Central Point School System, which included Central Point, Sams Valley and Gold Hill. During his teaching years, Mike taught social studies, English, speech, journalism and drama, coached basketball, cross country and track, directed school plays, served as President of the Oregon Language Arts Association, co-founded a civic theater group and became an avid runner, completing numerous ten kilometer races, as well as two marathons. As a school administrator, he served on the Jackson County Commission on Children and Families, was chosen in 1992 by the Oregon Association of Industries for the Outstanding Secondary Principal’s award and was the 1998 Central Point Citizen of the Year. After retirement, he worked for five years as an adjunct professor for Portland State University.
Mike and his wife, Kandee, have been married for 36 years and together have four children and eight grandchildren. A 34-year member of the Central Point Rotary Club, he remains active in that organization, as well as the Crater Foundation, of which he is a co-founder. Six years ago, the McClain’s made the move from Central Point to Jacksonville and immediately immersed themselves into the life of Jacksonville. He is the past president of the Jacksonville Boosters Club, is a Board member of the Jacksonville Boosters Foundation and enjoys participating in numerous “hands on” Boosters projects. He and Steve Casaleggio recently completed re-finishing the California Street benches, a two-year project. He serves on the Jacksonville Budget Committee and is an active member of the Jacksonville Presbyterian Church where he has served as a church elder and for the past two years has been the team captain for the church-sponsored Mexico Mission Yard Sale. He is an avid reader, a 20-year journalist and enjoys travel and the Jacksonville trail system of the Jacksonville Woodlands and Forest Park. In October of 2016, he was chosen to become a board member of the Rogue Valley Manor Foundation Board and has now promised Kandee that he will not take on any more volunteer work!
Featured image is of Mike McClain with Mira Wingfield.