Galen Smith came to RHS in 1972 as a Health and Physical Education teacher and as the head boys basketball coach. He was a 32-year educator for Rochester Community Schools, retiring in 2004. Before coming to our school and community, he enjoyed great success teaching and coaching at Clayton, his alma mater Chili, North Miami, Darlington, and Oak Hill High Schools. Overall he totaled 46 years of dedicated service to his students, parents, and colleagues.
During his years of service to education, Coach Smith coached cross-country and track & field, but was more well-known around the state for his basketball teams he coached. His 1973-74 Zebra squad still has the best single-season winning percentage in school history. They posted a 21-1 record and a final Associated Press state ranking of #9 in the entire state at the end of the season. This was many years before class basketball started in 1997. He led RHS on the hardwood to Sectional Championships in 1975 and 1978, and his teams won the Northern Lakes Conference in the 1973-1974, 1974-1975, and 1978-1979 seasons. Coach Smith was an esteemed role model, admired by his students and respected by his peers. A life coach, he provided the foundation and skill sets necessary to empower the success of his students, allowing them to embark on their life journey with confidence. He took great satisfaction in watching the development of young men and women as they evolved into productive, contributing citizens.
Graduating from Chili in 1954, he went on to earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Secondary Education in 1958 at Western New Mexico University. Later he earned his Master’s Degree in Education from Ball State University in 1965.
Galen was married to his high school sweetheart Joyce Hunt in 1957. Galan and Joyce enjoyed 63 years of marriage before his passing in November of 2020. They had three wonderful children, Kerry, Susan, and Greg and five awesome grandchildren.