February 5, 2024
On Saturday night, Cincinnati Hills Christian Academy (CHCA) celebrated a momentous occasion as Joseph Lucas, a fixture at the high school for 19 years as Head Athletic Trainer, was inducted into the school’s prestigious “Hall of Excellence.” The recognition dinner and ceremony brought together alumni, staff, and current students to honor Joe’s remarkable contributions to the school’s athletic community.
Joe’s unassuming nature shone through as he shared about the moment he learned of his induction, “It was weird because I operated so many years with the attitude of ‘just pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.'” Despite his discomfort with the spotlight, he graciously acknowledged the recognition, expressing his gratitude.
Joe’s journey at CHCA started after completing his undergraduate studies, taking a detour through an internship with the Cincinnati Bengals and graduate school at Auburn University. His arrival at CHCA wasn’t a predetermined path but a serendipitous opportunity.
“My mind’s thought was that I’d go back to professional sports or work in a college setting. But after being there for a couple of years, I realized… you are where God puts you for a reason,” stated Joe. His dedication to CHCA transcended a mere commitment, evolving into a profound calling and deep connection to the school’s community.
He went beyond the conventional duties of an athletic trainer, embodying a versatile presence by taking on roles akin to a de facto guidance counselor and mentor. Going beyond mere physical well-being, his commitment extended into the personal and mental facets of students’ lives. Stressing the significance of mental aspects in rehabilitation, he articulated, “Injuries are 90% mental, 10% physical.”
Joe’s collaboration with Dr. Peter Cha, CHCA’s Medical Director and Physician at Beacon Orthopaedics & Sports Medicine, was a vital aspect of his journey. The unique partnership between them ensured a seamless understanding of their respective approaches, streamlining the rehabilitation process for student-athletes. This effective cooperation underscored their commitment to providing outstanding healthcare for students, their families, and the entire CHCA community. It also helped bring Joe to Beacon as a full-time athletic trainer more than a year ago. His newest role will allow him to help shape the culture of athletic trainers in the region as he builds up the next generation.
“Joe understands the significance of doing the right things for the right reasons and acting with integrity,” shared Mike Slemons, the Director of Sports Medicine Outreach at Beacon. “His departure from CHCA is not an end but a transition to new opportunities. His impact will undoubtedly resonate, leaving an indelible mark on the school’s athletic program.”
The induction of Joe into CHCA’s “Hall of Excellence” is a testament to his unwavering commitment, multifaceted contributions, and profound impact on the lives of countless student-athletes. As CHCA continues to evolve, Joe’s legacy will remain embedded in the fabric of the school’s athletic community.