Larry Grimes’ colleagues and students at Sierra High School are familiar with a lot of things about the 2014 Cortopassi Family Foundation Excellence in Science Teaching awardee.
They call him Dr. Grimes because of his two doctorate degrees from the University of the Pacific in Stockton.
He has been a member of the Timberwolves’ faculty for the last 15 years, and has taught Biology, Physiology, and AP Biology. He is chairman of the Timberwolves’ Science Department.
Those and a few others are known facts on campus and in the school district about the popular teacher at Sierra. But just like many equally popular educators in the district, there are some little-known facts that, individually and cumulatively, contribute to Grimes’ overall personality – as an individual and as a professional – that people he interacts and mingles with everyday at work may not know about him. Here’s a quick rundown of 10 of them.
1) He has been a master falconer for more than 30 years. According to the Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, a Master Falconer is someone who has at least five years experience as a General Falconer and shows expertise in successful hunting and care of their birds, and experience with more than one species of raptor.
2) He has explored the sea as a scuba diver, and the skies with a telescope.
3) He has served in the U.S. Air Force for seven years.
4) He holds a bachelor’s degree in religion from California Lutheran University, graduating magna cum laude; it was during this time that he fell in love with education.
5) He is an ordained Assemblies of God minister. He served as senior pastor of Mountain Christian Center in Oakhurst, Calif., and as principal and administrator for Gateway Christian School (Christian Center was the sponsoring church) where he also taught seventh- and eighth-grade science classes. He was a parish pastor for a total of 11 years.
6) He and his wife Sheri are celebrating their 40th wedding anniversary this year.
7) He is a grandfather of two. He and his wife have three grown children.
8) He is teaching a course on Birds of Prey and Falconry this summer at the University of the Pacific in Stockton.
9) Paragliding, backpacking, fly-fishing, and music are among his hobbies. He plays the flute, bagpipes, penny whistle and fiddle.
10) He received his doctorate degree from Benerd School of Education at University of the Pacific. His dissertation topic – Teaching Evolution: A Heuristic Study of Personal and Cultural Dissonance.