Former Evarts High School math teacher Jimmy Middleton is the new Safe and Drug Free Schools coordinator for the Harlan County school system.
He fills the position left vacant by the death of longtime coordinator Robert Hansel in an automobile accident in October.
"One thing we were looking for in filling this position was someone who has the education experience and a law enforcement background," said Harlan County Schools Superintendent Tim Saylor. "He has this combination which is certainly rare. It is great that we had someone in our system to fill this position. He has the law enforcement training and experience. Jim has excellent credentials."
Middleton said he is excited for an opportunity to be able to remain in Harlan County and further his career by working with students in this capacity.
"I look forward to working with the board of education, administrators, principals, teachers, students and their families to make Harlan County Public Schools an even better place to educate children," said Middleton. "I especially appreciate the opportunity to help make a difference in the drug problem in the Harlan County community."
Middleton will be working in several areas in his new position, including attendance, truancy and dropout prevention, homebound, discipline and the Title IV Safe and Drug Free Schools program. He will also work with the school resource officers program.
His prior experience includes over 14 years of classroom teaching, and he is also a graduate of the Kentucky State Police Academy. He was tested and was offered employment with the FBI.
"I am very impressed with Jim," said Saylor. "I feel he will be a great addition to the administrative staff and will do an excellent job for the school district. I look forward to working with him in this capacity. He is an excellent math teacher. He is highly intelligent. He has hit the ground running in this position."
A 1983 graduate of Evarts High School, Middleton holds two associate degrees from Southeast Community College and a bachelor's degree from Eastern Kentucky University. He earned his master's degree in supervision from Lincoln Memorial University and a Rank I in principalship from Union College.
He and his wife, Barbara Eldridge Middleton, have two children, Hunter, 9, and Cara, 8. They are residents of Evarts. He is the son of Earl Lee and Demples Middleton, also of Evarts.