Cedar Hill Graduate Proud to Return to District

Craig Phillips had an enjoyable Christmas this year. 

Just a few weeks earlier, the 1986 Cedar Hill High School Graduate accepted a position to return to his alma mater as a Custodian.

And shortly after that, he learned that the pay for CHISD Custodians would be raised to $15 per hour.

While many staff members and scholars were enjoying opening presents or watching holiday movies, Phillips was cleaning the classrooms and halls, thus preparing for school to return.

“Cedar Hill has always been good to my family and I,” Phillips said. “I’m glad to be working for the school.”

Phillips, who will celebrate his 55th birthday on February 1, was born in Hillsboro and moved to Cedar Hill as a toddler. His father was a mechanic who owned Charlie’s Car & Auto. The family lived in a home right next to the auto shop.

Phillips’ mother worked in CHISD’s Human Resources Department. Both he and his sister (Kathy Adams – Class of 1989) graduated from Cedar Hill.

Phillips started at Bray Elementary in the early 1970s and graduated from CHHS – where he was a member of the football and track & field teams.

From his current assignment of Collegiate Prep Elementary, Phillips can remember when the campus on Pickard Drive was an empty field.

Phillips was trained by Permenter Custodian Shawn Lewis, who was recently featured on WFAA-TV for overcoming COVID-19 and returning to work. Phillips said he will likely be a “rover” – working the day shift on multiple campuses.

Prior to becoming a custodian, Phillips worked in construction, and he said he welcomes the opportunity to work indoors now.

Phillips’ family closed the auto shop about a decade ago, and the family moved to Johnson County.

“I have a lot of friends here, and I still think of Cedar Hill as my home,” Phillips said.

Phillips makes the 84-mile round trip drive from the small town of Rio Vista, in southern Johnson County, near the Brazos River.

“My whole life, I loved driving down to the Brazos River,” Phillips said. “Now, I live down there, and I drive up here to work.”