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Originally Published The Nugget News August 2, 2016
Author Rongi Yost

Rod Jones has dedicated his life to kids, as teacher and educator, counselor, coach and parent.

Jones taught health and physical education for 30 years, and coached multiple sports at the high school level, including volleyball. Jones retired from teaching in 2001, but kept coaching. This year will mark his 44th year of coaching club volleyball.

Over the course of his career, Jones has piled up quite a list of accomplishments. He was head coach for volleyball for 24 years, and made 10 state final appearances, and 12 appearances in the semi-finals. He led teams to many state championships, including five while at Marshall High School in Gresham – and one in Sisters.

His final state championship came when he helped coach the 1996-1997 Outlaws championship volleyball team, the first volleyball championship in Sisters High School (SHS) history.

Jones has also earned many personal honors. He was the National High School Coach of the Year (NHSCY) in 1992, and the finalist for the NHSCY in 1987. He was named the Oregon girls Coach of the Year in 1979 and 1992 for all girls sports, and named the state volleyball girls Coach of the Year four times.

Rod has been inducted into the Portland Public School Coaches/Athletes Hall of Fame, and the National Volleyball Festival Hall of Fame. He earned the National Distinguished Service Award/USA volleyball award, and as an athlete was inducted into the Athletic Hall of Fame for baseball at the Oregon College of Education (now Western Oregon).

Jones has vivid memories of SHS’s first state volleyball championship, and as one of the coaches, and along with the team was inducted into the SHS Hall of Fame last year.

And now, two decades later and in a different century, Jones has come full circle and will coach the Lady Outlaws once again.

Jones shared why he came back to Sisters.

“I am looking forward to the challenge,” said Jones. “I love the sport, and I love the kids. I enjoy the area, have very fond memories, and have good friends that I cherish.”

Jones explained his philosophy to The Nugget:

“It’s like looking at a clock. You see all the slashes that represent seconds, minutes and hours, and I want to help kids utilize their time, and make the most of every day. Volleyball is like another classroom with many opportunities. At any given moment it is what it is, and there’s no excuses.”

Jones shared he wants the Lady Outlaws to form a strong bond, get along with each other, and believe in themselves. He wants his players to have each others’ trust and each others’ backs.

A strong coaching staff will stand by Jones, and he’s excited to have them. Brad Bulloch, Suzie Fouts-Krueger, and Cris Converse will all assist Jones this year. Bulloch worked alongside Rod as a coach 20 years ago, and Krueger was a first-team all-state player on that first SHS championship team.