Cernovich Field House

Cernovich Fieldhouse Dedicated on September 1, 2023

Dr. Rick Cernovich, Kim Cernovich and members of their family were on hand at the Kewanee High School Stadium on September 1 for the dedication and ribbon-cutting ceremony of the newly constructed Cernovich Fieldhouse. Rick and Kim Cernovich were granted permanent naming rights in exchange for donations received by the Kewanee Schools Foundation totaling $250,000. Their wish is to honor and memorialize their fathers, George and Mike Cernovich, respectively. 

During the dedication, Dr. Jeff Johnson, president of the Kewanee School Board, thanked the Cernovich family for their generosity. Dr. Rick Cernovich followed by reminding students to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities available at Kewanee High School, stating the recent upgrades and changes have made it comparable to a small college campus.

“A plaque will be installed on the exterior of the building with the following inscription: Brothers Mike and George Cernovich, born to Serbian immigrant parents, were lifelong residents of Kewanee.  Both educated in the Kewanee School District, Mike was an Illinois State Trooper, and George managed the Clark Oil Gas Station. Ardent supporters of childhood education and athletics, they believed in honesty, hard work, loyalty and service to others. With honor, the Cernovich families dedicate this Fieldhouse to the memory of Mike and George and their commitment to the youth of Kewanee. May it serve as a place where teammates learn to care for one another and their community, both on and off the field”, noted Dr. Cernovich.  

The 2,800-square-foot facility is located at the south end of the football field, adjacent to the old fieldhouse. It houses two locker rooms with a total of 80 individual lockers, restrooms and showers for the football and track programs at KHS. The old fieldhouse has been repurposed to accommodate storage, laundry facilities, and a space for physical therapy services.

“Countless students will benefit from the new facility,” stated Dr. Chris Sullens, superintendent of the Kewanee School District. “The old fieldhouse was built in 1938, and although it served its purpose since that time, a new facility was much needed.” 

An alum of Kewanee High School (Class of 1972), Dr. Cernovich has been in family practice for 36 years.  Owner of the Sheffield Family Medical Center, he has served on the KCUSD #229 Board of Education and was on the original Board of the Foundation.  Both he and his father, George (Class of 1952), are also KHS Athletic Hall of Fame inductees, with Rick also named Honorary Boilermaker in 2019. 

Also an alum (Class of 1977), Kim is the owner of Cernovich Auto & Truck Wreck, Inc.  His father Mike (Class of 1945) founded M & K, which later became Cernovich Auto & Truck Wreck, Inc. 

“The Cernovich’s generosity and financial commitment to the Foundation and District are to be highly commended” stated Liz Breedlove, Executive Director of the Kewanee Schools Foundation.  “The Cernovich Fieldhouse is a welcome addition to Kewanee High School. Their support is greatly appreciated.”

Also included in the dedication and ribbon-cutting were Dr. Chris Sullens, superintendent; Rebecca Baney, Kewanee High School principal; Lori Christiansen, president of the Kewanee Schools Foundation Board and vice–president of the School Board; and Executive Director of the Kewanee Schools Foundation, Liz Breedlove.