Jim Painter was awarded the Junior College Achievement Award by the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame in 1993. His cumulative success after more than two decades of coaching baseball at Columbia State Community College certainly warranted such an honor. A Martinsville, Virginia, native, Painter was a four-year high school letterman in baseball. He enlisted in the U.S. Air Force after graduation and played three years in the armed forces, his team finishing as runner-up in a 1957 worldwide Air Force tournament. After his discharge, he headed for Middle Tennessee State University, receiving his BS and MS degrees by 1963 while playing baseball for the Blue Raiders and coaching as a graduate assistant. Following college, Painter spent the next five years as a junior high and high school coach at Murfreesboro, Tullahoma, and Franklin County. His 1968 Franklin County baseballers were TSSAA state champs. Painter finally arrived at Columbia State in 1970 and became baseball coach in 1972. By 1992 Columbia State had won seven state and Region VII junior college titles and had finished third, fourth, and eighth in three national tourneys. His overall Columbia State record at that point was an astounding 648-218. Certainly not lacking in honors and recognition for his fine coaching abilities, Painter has been recipient of eighteen coach of the year awards.