Doug Hall - An impressive commitment to education

  • Written by Leanne Christensen, RSD

Doug Hall. Courtesy photo.
Doug Hall has been teaching in the Riverview School District for 36 years. His educational focus and expertise has been in the field of business education.

He also has a deep and long standing passion for coaching.

Doug’s initial inspiration for teaching came in 1974, after graduating from Washington State University with a bachelor of arts degree in business administration.

He was working at a mortgage company in Longview, Wash., when he had an opportunity to teach a night class in marketing at a local community college. He truly enjoyed his teaching experience so much that he decided to pursue education as a permanent career.

During this time Doug remembers having conversations with a family friend who shared his experiences working as a high school teacher and basketball coach, and it was through these shared experiences that Doug realized his passion for high school teaching and coaching.

With that, he headed back to school (Western Washington University) for his second degree, this time in education.

Doug was hired to teach in Riverview in 1976.

His teaching career began at Tolt High School.

With just a few exceptions he has always taught business classes throughout his career.

He shares: “No matter what the subject matter, I have always really enjoyed interaction with the high- school-age student, both as a teacher and a coach.”

Doug’s first coaching opportunity was at Tolt working with the boys football and girls basketball programs.

In 1978 he attended a coaching clinic where he had the extraordinary opportunity to talk to John Wooden (UCLA basketball legend) one-on-one for over an hour. He remembers: “ I originally had intended to ask questions about the full court defensive press play, however most of our conversation ended up being about Mr. Madden’s ‘pyramid of success’ and how he used basketball to teach character and work ethic to his players. I always tried to focus on and teach Mr. Madden’s definition of success which was ‘Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best that you are capable of becoming.’”

Doug adds: “I always wanted my players to focus on putting out their best effort and then win or lose, they would always be winners.”

What began as a volunteer coaching job, became a 20-year head coaching experience which Doug explains: “ Over the years I have been blessed with the opportunity to work with great assistant coaches, players and parents. Because of this strong family support, we were able to take our teams on several trips to tournaments in eastern Washington, Arizona, California and Hawaii.

When asked about his most memorable event as a teacher, Doug recalls a time when a Cedarcrest parent showed him a website from a high school in Ohio, which highlighted/promoted their students who participated in good deeds and hoped that this program could be adopted at Cedarcrest.

So, as the 2009-2010 school year began, Doug spoke with Peggy Filer (a CHS teacher) about posting “good deed” articles on the CHS website.

The idea was that Peggy’s Random Acts of Kindness Club students would nominate or “BUST” other students for doing good deeds around campus.

Mr. Hall’s Web Publishing class would then write the articles for the website.

Student Laura Cavens (class of 2010), was assigned the job of writing the articles for the program’s first year. She did an excellent job and this program is now very popular among CHS students.

“The memorable event,” Doug continues, “happened during the 2009-2010 winter break while I was visiting my mother in Corpus Christi, Texas.

“We were at a local event and my mother introduced me to one of her friends who was a member of the local school board. My mother told her that I was a teacher at Cedarcrest High School located near Seattle. The friend said she thought she had heard of Cedarcrest, and then asked me if that was the high school that posted the “BUSTED” articles on their website featuring random acts of kindness by the students.Now originally I thought that it was a great idea to let our community know about the good deeds our students had done, but I never imagined that we would also be sharing these stories with someone living over 2,300 miles away.”

Doug’s passion for teaching is shared by his wife Carol who was hired in Riverview in 1974. Together they have served/taught students in our district for a total of 70 years. Quite an impressive commitment to the educational process.

With regard to his retirement plans Doug was reticent in his reply. He knows that the time to retire will eventually come, however for the time being he enjoys teaching far too much to make any immediate plans.

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