Darlington High names new athletics director
James Norris, a longtime teacher and coach in the area, will be Darlington High School’s next athletics director, the school announced Thursday.
Norris served as the school’s assistant athletics director and a Social Studies teacher during the past year.
He replaces Michael Jordan, who never publicly said he was leaving, nor did the school district publicly announce he was leaving. However, the district did begin taking applications for his job while he still had the job. Jordan’s name was not mentioned in the news release the district sent out to announce Norris’ hiring.
Prior to arriving at DHS, Norris coached tight ends and H-backs for the Dillon High School varsity football team from 2012-19, where he was a part of that program’s five state championships and three runners-up in Classes 2A and 3A during that time.
From 1999-2012, Norris coached kickers and tight ends as well as served as special teams co-coordinator for the Marlboro County High School varsity football team. At Marlboro County, he was a part of that program’s 2001 Class 4A state championship team that also secured eight region titles and three lower state runners-up finishes. Additionally, he served as Marlboro County’s junior varsity head coach for two seasons during which the team compiled a 17-3 record.
DHS Principal Cortney Gehrke described Norris as a passionate and experienced leader in student athletics.
“Coach Norris brings a renewed energy and passion for Darlington High School athletics,” Gehrke said. “He is going to work hard to support our student-athletes and coaches and to get all of our athletic programs to a competitive level that this community can celebrate.”
Norris holds a Bachelor of History and a Master of Education from the University of South Carolina as well as a Master of Education in Education Administration from Grand Canyon University. He is certified as a Registered Athletic Administrator through the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (NIAAA). He teaches Social Studies at DHS, and serves as the FCA Huddle Leader for the school.
Norris gave praise to those close to him over the years for creating this opportunity.
“First, I want to thank God for allowing me to be placed in this position. I also want to thank my wife for standing behind me these past 16 years,” Norris said. “People truly do not know what a coach’s wife really does behind the scenes. I have been very blessed by serving under great athletic directors in my career, and I look forward to using that experience to enhance the overall athletic program at Darlington High School.”