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Tracy Hobson: 28 Years of Service to HCS

28 June 2019

(HCS)
- Summers were just as hot to Tracy Hobson in 1991 as they seem now.  Hobson joined the Hoover City Schools’ Operation department that sweltering summer as a groundskeeper.  From landscaping to cutting grass, he did just about everything under the sun (literally) for grounds on each Hoover campus.  Keep in mind, though, Hoover City Schools had far fewer campuses in the early 1990s. Ten fewer, to be exact. Hobson eventually moved from grounds to painter, from painter to general maintenance, and then onto other roles over the years - including Operations Supervisor.

Now chief of all HCS Operations (technically, Coordinator of Maintenance and New Construction), Hobson still gets out in the sun quite a bit for his work.  Even so, rising through the ranks to the top job now pulls him indoors for countless meetings, paperwork, and operational strategizing. As of July 1st however, all of that comes to an abrupt halt.  That’s when Hobson officially retires from Hoover City Schools.

Retirement will give him more time to spend with his wife, children, and grandchildren.  He can travel more, grill out more, and tackle those lingering home projects. As he does, he undoubtedly will reflect on a unique career filled with building plans, turf and track replacements, and numerous new school construction projects.

“This district has always supported me and given me everything I needed to be successful,” Hobson said.

Support and resources proved critical to that success: Hobson oversees facilities for one of the state’s largest schools systems: 2,500,000 square feet of facilities spread across 500 acres.  His modest team of 40 includes plumbers, electricians, painters, HVAC technicians, carpenters, groundskeepers, and equipment operators. Collectively, the team fields more than 5,000 work orders each year.

“From the asphalt to the grass to the roof - if you can see it, we are responsible for it.”

“We have established an unbelievably talented team. Our first priority is to ensure a safe and comfortable learning environment for our students and faculty.  As support staff, we prioritize our work orders as they come in to ensure needs are met,” Hobson said. “I think our facilities would compete with any other across Alabama - if not beyond.”  

Hobson will be ending his HCS career just days before the ribbon-cutting of the system’s newest facility: the Riverchase Career Connection Center (RC3).  This high-end skilled trades center for students grades 10-12 will be a crowning achievement for Hobson - a collaborative effort among countless public/private entities.

“We are excited to give students another option in their educational journey.  I am very proud of the work of our folks and the community partnerships we have made to bring RC3 to life.”   

RC3 may indeed produce the next Tracy Hobson: a skilled employee with a strategic, adaptive mindset; all summarized in a familiar mantra: hard work pays off.

“I’ve had an incredible journey with a great storybook ending.  I hope my story will be an inspiration for all skilled trades workers and especially the incoming RC3 students,” Hobson said.  “Skilled trades can be just as successful as two-or-four year degrees. I’m thankful for the opportunities I have been given and I know Hoover City Schools will be well-positioned for the future.”

Tracy Hobson photo collage