If you have ever been to an Indianola home track meet, you will have heard the voice of Roland “Rollie” Renard over the public address system. Rollie has been the announcer for Indianola track for the past 28 years.
Mr. Renard graduated from Valley High School in West Des Moines. He attended Graceland College, Drake University and NE Missouri State University. While at Graceland, he lettered in Golf and Track. After transferring to Drake, he continued his athletic skills, lettering in track, and running in the Drake Relays.
After graduation, Mr. Renard taught government and economics at Indianola High School for 8 years, served as Jr. High Assistant Principal for 6 years, and 16 years as a 7th Grade Social Studies teacher. While a teacher at Indianola, Rollie was a coach for Jr. High, sophomore, and varsity sports. He coached a varsity golf team to State and had numerous conference championship teams in other sports. As a coach, he had the privilege of mentoring many players including several members of the current Jim Garrison Hall of Fame – Bob Allen, Jeff Jones, Cal Leonard, Dan Koch, Rick Lathrum, Joe and Casey Blake.
Mr. Renard worked as a volunteer judge and track timer for several years while a teacher at Indianola. In 1979, he took his love for track and field to the press box when he became the voice of Indianola home track meets. During this time, he has witnessed many outstanding track and field athletes from the central Iowa area – LoLo Jones, Natasha Kaiser, Summer Johnson, Joseph Kiptanui, Kevin Little, Christy Dickerson, and Jim Garrison, just to name a few.
Rollie Renard is the standard by which all volunteers can be measured. He took a keen love for track and field to the press box. There he transformed this devotion to acknowledge all that competed. As an announcer, Rollie would recognize all of the runners in a race, realizing that the true test of the athlete wasn’t necessarily in who finished first but that those that finished the race were all winners. For the last 28 years, he has never altered his conviction to this belief.
Mr. Renard and his wife, Vernal, still reside in Indianola. They are both retired from the Indianola School District. They have two sons and one daughter – Kelly, Randy, and Tammy. They are the proud grandparents to nine grandchildren.
As a tribute to Rollie Renard and his unselfish support of the student athletes of Central Iowa, the Indianola Athletic Department has established the “Rollie Renard Volunteer Service Award”. This award will be given to worthy volunteers. Nominations are always welcome.