James A. Shiminski was born in Worcester, Mass., on February 9, 1931 the son of Anthony and Eleanor Brogan Shiminski.
Jim’s passion for golf began at age 10 as a caddy at the Worcester Country Club. He excelled over the years to become the youngest golf professional in New England in 1952.
He received his Bachelor of Science degree from Fitchburg State College, Masters from North Adams State College, Doctorate in Education from the University of Massachusetts.
Discharged from the army at Fort Campbell Kentucky he received the Commendation Medal for meritorious service with the Eleventh Airborne Division. He spent 17 years at Mount Everett High school as a teacher, director, coach and vice principal. In 1991, he became Title I Director for the City of Pittsfield and remained in that role until 2006. As Title I director he developed the Parent-Child Home program for high-risk children which received numerous national awards. James was a professor at Westfield State College and served as an educational consultant. Dr. Shiminski was a member of Sheffield American Legion Post 340, Sheffield Land Trust, Sheffield Historical Society, Great Barrington Historical Society and in 1982 was appointed Honorary Deputy Sheriff.
He is survived by Barbara Jeanne Spadaccini, flight attendant and merchant mariner, whom he married on November 22, 1958; his children Tania Shiminski-Maher and husband Spencer of New York City, Kyle Shiminski and wife Juliana of Southlake, Texas; and three grandchildren Andrew, Samantha and Emily. He was predeceased by brother, Paul, and sister, Joan.
A funeral mass was held at Saint Elizabeth Seton Church, Keller, Texas., officiated by Msgr. E. James Hunt, pastor. Burial will be in Our Lady of the Valley Cemetery 12:30 p.m. on February 14. Expressions of sympathy in Jim’s memory may be made to Sheffield Land Trust-Community Trail Network P.O. Box 940, 96 Main St., Sheffield, MA 01257. Condolences may be made through birchesroyfuneralservices.com.