Jodie felt that she could have written this next memory since it so closely matched her own experience.
When I heard that you had been diagnosed with cancer and had to retire, I was saddened. But I was also filled with selfish thoughts. It was like I lost a connection to the place that helped me as an adult.
But then I started receiving weekly emails from you about the things that really mattered in life. You told us that you began to write these as you were going through chemotherapy and recovering from two surgeries. I couldn’t believe it.
You just can’t stop teaching. Those emails are first reads every Wednesday. They have become so valuable that I resend them to all of my direct reports. Then they get transferred down through the organization.
Every staff meeting I include a topic from a recent email on the agenda. They really have helped up focus on the important things.
I like how each email leaves us with an inspirational message. What makes these different from other messages is that they don’t preach to us. You have a way of helping us discover important truths for ourselves.
I remember back from a course you taught when you told us your approach to teaching was discovery learning. I’m not sure that I really understood that concept at the time, but I do now. It has become my leadership approach. People respond better when you can guide them to discover what need to be done rather than telling them.
Thanks for your forever teaching and helping us forever learn.
Brad – Class of 1990