Rutherford County Schools

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COL (Ret) Harry Houchens
Director of JROTC 

Rutherford County Schools
2240 Southpark Drive
Murfreesboro, TN 37128

(615) 898-7974

Hours: Monday-Friday 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.




Organized under the authority of the 1916 National Defense Act the Rutherford County High Schools' Junior Reserve Officer's Training Corps (JROTC) program was first established in 1967 at Central High School. In the thirty-three years since, with 735 cadets currently enrolled the program has expanded into all six-area high schools. Beginning in August 2003 JROTC will also be offered at Seigel High School.

The mission of the JROTC program is the "Motivate Young People to be Better American Citizens." The JROTC program prepares a student for life, not for the military. A JROTC cadet is under no obligation to join the military. The interest of the JROTC program is simply to give a student the opportunity to develop and improve him or herself. To accomplish this task the program uses military skills to teach self-discipline, selflessness, confidence, teamwork and pride in a job well done. The JROTC is a credited course given during the regular school hours. It teaches a broad spectrum of subjects, including American Military History, government, verbal and written communication, current events, financial planning and wellness. In addition, the program offers extracurricular activities like drilling team, color guard, air rifle team, and adventuring team. Credit substitution allowed for Life Time Wellness, US. Government, and Financial Planning.  Students taking JROTC for two to three years receive Life Time Wellness, US. Government, and Finanacial Planing substitutions.

Perhaps the most important unusual part of the JROTC program is the fact that it does not just teach; it also trains. It trains students in personal skills like studying effectively, taking test, developing winning habits, job interviewing, overcoming fears of failure, and setting goals for themselves. The course also trains cadets in leadership skills like motivating others, making decisions, planning, working as a team member, and problem solving.

The instructors are retired active duty Army officers and non-commissioned officers who are certified by the U.S. Army to teach JROTC. They are employed by the Rutherford County School Board and are full time members of the high school faculty.


Name School Email
COL (Ret) Gary Spry Blackman High
SGM (Ret) Barbara Sanders Blackman High
LTC (Ret) Shawn Waltrip Eagleville High
LTC (Ret) Joel Payne Stewarts Creek High
1SG Jeff Sobocinski Stewarts Creek High 
LTC (Ret) Glenn Shirley LaVergne High
SGM (Ret) William McNeal LaVergne High
LTC (Ret) Russ Rector Oakland High
CSM (Ret) Jeff Troy Oakland High
COL (Ret) Michael Schwartz Riverdale High
MSG (Ret) Jeff Pick Riverdale High
LTC (Ret) Richard A. Jeffries Smyrna High
CSM (Ret) George N. Nelson Smyrna High
CW4(Ret) Roger Alcendor Siegel High
MSG (Ret) James R. Thurston  Siegel High 
COL (Ret) Harry W. Houchens  JROTC Director 
SSG (Ret) Kenneth Ford  JROTC Asst. Dir.