Tom Parker was born in Patagonia, Arizona, in 1924. His family moved to San Diego shortly thereafter, and he attended Central Elementary School, Woodrow Wilson Junior High School, and Hoover High School, graduation in 1943.
Tom served in the U.S. Army from March 1943 to August 1945. In 1950 he graduated from San Diego State University, earning his General Secondary Teaching Credential. HE married Betty Calloway and they raised two children, Jill and Judy.
In 1950, he was employed by the Sweetwater Union School District and assigned to National City Junior High School. In 1951 he taught at Mar Vista High School and then at Sweetwater High School, serving as Head Track Coach and Assistant Football Coach. He became Head Football Coach in 1958 and was also honored as High School Football Coach of the Year for San Diego County.
In 1961, Tom was selected as the first Athletic Director/ Department Chair and Head Football/ Track Coach at Southwestern College. Whatever the task, he worked tirelessly to do the best job possible. He retired from coaching in 1965 because of the demands of his many jobs, but continued to serve as Athletic Director until 1977. He remained on staff in full-time teaching until he retired in 1982. “Mr. Parker” was highly respected for his organization, implementation, fairness and straight shooting as an administrator. He genuinely cared for teachers, coaches, and student athletes. Anything he could do, he did.
Tom Parker also served as President of the National City Kiwanis Club in 1971 and as a delegate to the National Convention in Detroit, MI. In addition, he is included in the Wall of Fame at Hoover High School for his many personal and professional accomplishments.