My name is Sammy Chagolla. I have lived in the Peoria area for over 40 years. I have taught Social Studies for over 20 years in the Peoria Unified School District. I am now at Marshall Ranch Elementary School trying to help Marla Hobbs make a difference in this community. Our main goal is to create great leaders of all our students. We believe that MAGIC is our main focus. Modeling good behavior, accepting responsibility, giving respect, improving yourself through goals and cooperating with everyone. MAGIC is the foundation to our success. It takes a village to raise a kid. Every person on our campus is made to believe that without MAGIC, we're missing something in our lives. It’s important that everyone, including the parents of our students believe that anything is possible.
Sammy Chagolla's History
Sammy started wrestling in the 2nd grade here in the Peoria High School Wrestling room when Joe Hunter was the first wrestling coach. Sammy watched his brothers wrestle and was convinced that this would be his way to success in school and life. There would be one person that would mold his beliefs and attitude about hard work and determination and that person would be Mr. Michael Koury. Mr. Michael Koury transferred from Holbrook High School as an assistant coach in 1975 and mentored Sammy as a wrestler and eventually to his success as a high school coach. Sammy wants you to know that if it wasn’t for Mr. Michael Koury he wouldn’t be successful today in life. Sammy says, “Mr. Koury is the reason for his success as well as the Peoria Wrestling Program. He brought to this school the magic of believing in the possibilities of what could be accomplished if you work harder and smarter than your opponent.
Some of Sammy’s accomplishments are as follows:
Eight Time Freestyle and Greco Roman State Wrestling Champion
National Freestyle Wrestling Champion in 1980
Three-time Peoria Invitational Champion 1981, 1982 and 1983
Four-time Arizona State Wrestling Champion.
Appeared on the Wheaties Breakfast of Champions Box (1989) for his wrestling and school accomplishments.
Most Arizona High School State Wrestling Records (7) before graduating in 1983
Arizona Republic/Phoenix Gazette Athlete of the Year 1983
March 9th, 1983 was designated as Sammy Chagolla Day in the City of Peoria, AZ for his accomplishments
Member of the All Time Wrestling Team for Northern Arizona University where he still holds the takedown record
Named the 4A Coach of the Year (1996-1999)
One of the first 4-time High School State Champions in the United States to coach 4 consecutive state championship teams as a coach
Assistant coach for Show Low High School (AZ) in 2002 and 2003 where he helped win two state championships in a row (2002 and 2003). Increased their takedowns from 236 to 1400 in one season.
Named the Veteran’s of Foreign War Teacher of the Year in 2004.
Given motivational/inspirational presentations to schools since 1983.
2014 Veterans Freestyle National Champion
Silver medalist in the World Veterans Freestyle Championships in 2009 and 2014
Remains involved with mentoring future coaches and wrestlers today
Currently a wrestling consultant for schools that need help, specifically with takedowns
Currently giving inspirational presentations to schools and businesses about winning attitudes
Currently an assistant principal at Marshall Ranch Elementary School in the Peoria Unified School District
Sammy wants everyone to know that “Everyone wants to be a champion…but not everyone is willing to pay the price to be one.” There is no magic pill to success…it’s just hard work that no one else is willing to do! If you work hard and listen to those individuals in your life that care about you, your life will be much easier. “Believe in your dreams because anything is possible! The journey and destination of your dream may change in life…but your purpose and focus must remain steady.” Finally, life is way too short so continue to dream and enjoy life! God Bless!