Griswold’s Chaillie Named 1A XC Coach of Year


December 17th, 2012 by Jim Field

Jane Chaillie was recognized as Iowa’s 1-A Girls’ Cross Country Coach of the Year at the Iowa Track and Field Coaches Association Awards Banquet held in Ames. Chaillie coached the Griswold Tigers to the school’s first ever state girls’ cross country championship this fall.The Tigers had a near storybook season. The Griswold harriers captured their fourth consecutive regional title. They claimed their seventh Western Iowa Conference championship in eight years. The conference win tied the Tigers with Missouri Valley for most conference wins. The team won eight meet championships, most against 2A and 3A teams, this season.Prior to Chaillie taking over the reins of the school’s cross country program in 2004, the Tigers had never won a WIC title or advanced to the state meet. That changed with their first conference championship in 2005. In 2006 the team made their first appearance at state and have been back every year since.

Chaillie is one of the few coaches in the state to have received the Cross Country Coach of the Year for both boys and girls. She was honored as the 1A boys’ cross county coach of the year in 2006 when the Tigers were the state runners-up. She has led the boys’ squad to five WIC titles.

The Coach of the Year is selected by peers. “I am humbled to be recognized by my peers from across the state, but this award really belongs to the entire Griswold community. I get to work with talented students who have great work ethics, have awesome assistants in Coach Topham and Wilder, and can’t say enough about the incredible parent and community support, ” shared Coach Chaillie after accepting the honor.

Chaillie also credits her own coaches and those that have served as mentors with helping her develop as a coach. She ran cross-country and track as a high school student at Cumberland-Massena. Chaillie competed for Dakota Wesleyan and Graceland University, representing both schools at nationals in the race walk. While student teaching at Atlantic she had the opportunity to serve as a volunteer coach for cross country under Bruce Henderson. Chaillie also had the chance to serve as an assistant track coach under Gary Bergstrom. ” I am so grateful for having had great mentors,” she adds.

In addition to her cross country responsibilities at Griswold, Chaillie teaches 5th grade and coaches the boys’ track and field team.