By Cathi Arora

After more than 10 years as Huntcliff Homes Association president, Jim Stockslager is passing the gavel.

Throughout his tenure, he has faced multiple challenges, including disputes among neighbors that have ranged from clashes over barking dogs to a complicated seven-year legal battle over a retaining wall, aging infrastructure and the devastation of the 500-year flood. And, according to those who know him, he has always risen to the occasion.

“Jim is even-tempered, moves things along quickly, and is just a great guy,” said Al Sauer, Huntcliff HOA’s treasurer.

Stockslager, who moved to Sandy Springs in 1954, has proven to be quite the problem solver. He believes you have to face a situation swiftly and directly.

“If you get involved early, problems are easier to fix,” Stockslager said. “You have to see if there is an easy solution first, before it gets contentious. If we let things fester, people lose face.”

Huntcliff, located in the northwest corner of Sandy Springs, sits along a 4.5-mile bend along the Chattahoochee River.

Stockslager, who has lived in the community since 1977 with his wife Janet, discovered Huntcliff while scouting property for Cherokee Town and Country Club, where he’s been a member since 1955.

Now that new president Dane Seibert has taken the helm of the organization, Stockslager is looking forward to golf trips with his wife, building bluebird houses for his neighbors and restoring the 1931 Chris-Craft boat that has been in his basement for decades.

Stockslager spent 40 years as an engineer with Reliance Electric before retiring in 1993 at age 65. His engineering expertise and his Navy experience prepared him for his volunteer duties as head of a 450-plus home subdivision that has been around since the late 1960s.

He credits the people and projects for keeping him involved this long.

“Ninety-nine percent of the people you deal with are fun to deal with,” Stockslager said. “One of the things I like best about my neighbors is that if you ask a specific question, they will help.”

One such example involved a problem with a faulty pipe, a dam and a pond in the subdivision’s common area off Roswell Road.

“We had gotten a quote from a professional contractor for $150,000 and we just couldn’t afford that,” Stockslager said.

With the help of neighbors, they designed and installed a new piping system for $8,700.

“Jim does everything,” Sauer said. “He is the reason the homes association doesn’t spend a lot of money. Because he does it himself.”

“I really enjoy the technical projects,” Stockslager said.

Examples of his handy work are evident throughout the community and include benches, signage and a floating dock, which he proudly claims survived last year’s massive flooding.

Unfortunately, the neighborhood stables did not fare so well. The nearly 50-year-old barn sustained massive damage. Now, thanks in part to Stockslager’s willingness to use both his engineering acumen and his carpentry abilities, the facility is restored.

In addition, Stockslager’s legacy includes a new clubhouse and pool, of which he was intimately involved in the finance, design and construction.

And the avid golfer’s home overlooks a course he helped establish.