Mr. Jeff Hartford is a native of southern Illinois, growing up on a farm in Stonefort, IL (35 miles east of Carterville). His father was a coal miner / part time farmer and his mother stayed at home to help with the farm. Jeff graduated from Carrier Mills High School in 1991 and entered the United States Marine Corps. He served four years in the infantry as a squad leader and two years guarding nuclear weapons for submarines.
Upon returning to southern Illinois, Jeff attended John A. Logan College and Southern Illinois University at Carbondale. He graduated in 1999 with a Bachelor of Science in history education. That same year, he was hired at Carbondale Community High School where he taught Government, American history and coached basketball for four years. During that time, he earned his Master’s degree in Educational Administration at SIUC. In 2011, he completed his superintendent endorsement at SIUC.
In 2003, Jeff was hired as the assistant principal / athletic director for Carterville Intermediate School. He remained in this position for five years until he was hired as the principal, replacing Keith Liddell in 2008. Jeff ended his fifth year as principal of Carterville Intermediate School in 2013. In summer of 2013, he became the principal of the new Carterville Junior High.
On a personal note, Jeff Hartford married his high school sweetheart Stephanie Chaney Hartford. She is the Dean of Instruction at John A. Logan College and teaches speech communication courses. They currently live in Carterville and have two children.