Upper School Math teacher Jim Carlone ’88 has been awarded the Endowed Alumni Chair of Mathematics, becoming only the second holder of this honor that was established in the 1980s to recognize exceptional math instruction at McCallie.
“Jim Carlone is an outstanding math teacher and is well deserving of this honor,” Assistant Headmaster Kenny Sholl said. “He pushes his boys to achieve their best efforts in a way that inspires a love of the subject and gets the best out of his students. He was the clear choice for this honor.”
The Alumni Chair of Mathematics was established to honor three legendary McCallie math teachers — Chalmers McIlwaine ‘21, John Pataky ‘49 and Houston Patterson ‘43 — and “to perpetuate the high classroom standards set by these three master teachers.”
The purpose of the position as stated at the time of its endowment was “to attract an exceptional teacher whose knowledge and appreciation of mathematics is surpassed only by his desire and ability to teach in the high school classroom.”
“The Alumni Chair of Mathematics is a testament to McCallie’s tradition of academic excellence,” Headmaster Lee Burns ’87 said. “Jim carries on the legacy established by the great teachers who came before him.”
The first Alumni Chair of Mathematics at McCallie was longtime teacher Lance Nickel, who held the chair from its founding until his retirement. As a student at McCallie, Carlone was instructed by Nickel and Pataky, and Patterson was Carlone’s dorm head. Additionally, he knew McIlwaine from visits to campus during those years. After returning to McCallie as a member of the Math faculty, Carlone was mentored by and became close friends with Nickel.
“I’ve always admired those legendary McCallie instructors from my time as a student and during my years on the math faculty,” Carlone said. “Those three men — along with Lance Nickel — truly are the Rushmore of math teachers at McCallie, and to be associated with them is really cool. It means a lot.”
The Alumni Chair of Mathematics provides a stipend for travel to math conferences or to visit other schools to share best practices and new techniques in math instruction.