Teckenbrock Named Waubonsee “Fab 40”
Sugar Grove — A lifelong love of sports, combined with strong business acumen, has led Jim Teckenbrock to a successful career as sports director for WSPY radio and executive director of the Sandwich Chamber of Commerce. Waubonsee Community College is proud to honor him as one of the college’s “Fabulous 40” alumni.
Jim Teckenbrock, seen here in a studio at WSPY where he is the sports director, is being honored by Waubonsee Community College as one of the college’s “Fabulous 40” alumni.
As part of the college’s yearlong 40th anniversary celebration, Waubonsee is honoring 40 alumni and students who embody the mission, vision and values of the college. These individuals represent the diversity of Waubonsee’s students and the college district, as well as the diversity of the college’s mission as a comprehensive community college.
A 1966 graduate of Plano High School, Teckenbrock played baseball, football, basketball and ran track while in high school.
“I loved sports from the time I could walk,” he said.
After high school, Teckenbrock worked for All-Steel Equipment in Aurora before joining the Navy. He was in Vietnam for a year, patrolling the rivers up and down the country. While in the Navy, he continued playing sports, competing in basketball, fast-pitch softball and football.
Teckenbrock returned to the Fox Valley area in 1971 and went back to All-Steel’s sister company, Rayco. Asked to test for an office job, even though he didn’t have the required bachelor’s degree, he successfully landed the job, working there until 1974 when the company moved to South Bend, Ind. The move provided Teckenbrock with the motivation to return to college, and he enrolled at Waubonsee.
“It was a good time to be able to make that jump,” he said. “The GI Bill® paid for the classes and a subsidy each month for expenses. I had heard a lot of good things about Waubonsee, such as its small class sizes. That’s why I opted to go there.”
Like many of his fellow students, Teckenbrock had the built-in community of being a veteran.
“There were an awful lot of us who were veterans,” he said. “In a lot of my classes, there were people older than me. That’s the nice thing about community colleges, is that there’s a broad mix of ages.”
Because he wasn’t sure of his path yet, Teckenbrock found Waubonsee to be the perfect place to find his way.
“Not knowing what I wanted to do or the answer to the question of what I could do, Waubonsee was an affordable place to answer those questions,” he said. “It was a great stepping stone. I didn’t get lost in the transition.”
At Waubonsee, Teckenbrock formed lifelong friendships and made contacts that he calls on even today.
“The biggest thing I got out of Waubonsee — other than my associate degree — was the people,” he said. “There were so many wonderful people that I still see today. Waubonsee has come a long, long way since I was a student. It is such a vibrant part of the community. I think of the thousands of people who have gone through there and gone on to contribute to society. Without Waubonsee, I shudder to think where the community would be. Waubonsee is one of the cornerstones of the community.”
Not staying away from Waubonsee for long after he graduated, Teckenbrock became Waubonsee’s intramurals director and assistant baseball coach while taking classes at Northern Illinois University. He helped start the women’s basketball program at Waubonsee and later switched from baseball to softball to help with recruiting. Teckenbrock actually started working for Waubonsee while still a student. He worked in the buildings and grounds department and pitched in with athletics as well under the work-study program.
Teckenbrock went on to work for 21 years for The Office Works in Plano as sales manager. He started with WSPY radio in 1996.
“I’m proud that I’ve been able to help showcase, through WSPY, some of our area’s great athletes,” he said. “The time for them to be recognized is very small — it goes by so fast. Getting their names out there, you don’t know what coach might be listening. It’s just been so much fun meeting so many players and their parents.”
In addition to his play-by-play calling duties on WSPY, Teckenbrock took the Sandwich Chamber of Commerce executive director position in 2006.
“The Chamber’s goal is to make a better environment for all of our businesses,” he said. “Our community has so many treasures. It’s changing, but we’re there to make the change be positive for everyone. It’s fun to be a part of that.”
Teckenbrock, a resident of Plano, has five children, Jim Jr., Jill, Jay, TJ and Taylor.