In observation of Teacher Appreciation Week, Softdocs’ marketing team wanted to take a moment and remember some of the dedicated educators who’ve helped shape our lives.
Laurel Hanson Stiller – Vice President of Marketing
During Teacher Appreciation Week, I look back on Dr. Richard Wyllie who patiently worked with me every lunch period, during my senior year, to tutor me in Calculus at Downers Grove South High School in Illinois. It was a stretch for me to be in that class but he was patient and persistent, and it paid off. When I transitioned to Miami of Ohio, I aced Calculus and even took extra math because I knew it so well. No surprise, he is now faculty at North Central College and continues to ensure student success!
Herbie Hollar – Creative Director
Mr. James Carter was my AP English teacher. He felt more like a professor (we think he did have his PhD but went by Mister). He treated us more like young adults in college than high school students. He was a long-haired, grey-bearded independent thinker and didn’t quite acquiesce to authority (he arrived and left with his clip-on neck tie on, but didn't wear it during the day), which we, as high school students, thought was really cool!
His class really improved my writing, and taught me to think when I read, instead of just read, in order to recognize themes, symbolism, unique language, particular word choices, underlying connections, scenery and other elements of superb story telling that has stayed with me in my career in the marketing communications realm. I think about words (and books) visually, as most of my profession has been in graphic design, but the critical thinking behind the design derives from the story telling.
Mr. Carter jump-started me on that path story telling (yes, a logo or magazine ad or TV commercial all are story-telling mechanisms) as a graphic designer and now as a creative director. Thanks, Jim!
Becca Farmer Bradley – Graphic Designer
I can honestly say that if I didn't have Mrs. Hays at Lexington High School I would not be in my current career. I took my first Journalism class with Mrs. Hays during my freshman year, and graduated 8 years later from the UofSC with a degree in Journalism. She was patient and supportive as she encouraged me to be creative while writing and designing.
Jaimie Falke DeVita – Marketing Operations Manager
Mr. Buchanan was not who I assumed would be my favorite teacher after walking out of his class on the first day of school at North Mecklenburg High School – Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools. But his love of chemistry and his desire for his students to learn won me over. Mr. Buchanan was about order and discipline, but only as a way to foster an environment where fresh ideas took root and students were pushed to be their best. Thank you Mr. Buchanan for not only teaching me about kinetics and intermolecular forces, but also about being diligent, hardworking, and the best version of myself each day.
Barb Ford Sheehan - Solutions Marketing Manager
I am fortunate enough to have had several great teachers, but there was one who truly helped shape my ultimate path. Ron Clemons is an infamous icon of Truman High School, #Trumanhsindep, teaching journalism and advising newspaper and yearbook staff members for over 35 years. He taught me how to write. More than that, he taught me how to create a story that others might actually care to read. And he taught me how to effectively communicate. Seems basic, but it has served me well in my life and career.
Jordan Harbor – Marketing Content Lead
While my love for reading predates my ability to remember, I can recall the many teachers who so diligently reinforced the value and joys of reading throughout my early education. We have many books at home, which my children now love to read, that I received from participating in book clubs and reading programs, dating back to my first grade class with Mrs. Johnson at Lexington Elementary School. Thank you Lexington School District One and thank you to every teacher along the way who encouraged me to explore the literary world.
Steely Masters – Customer Marketing Manager
Mrs. Martina was my algebra teacher at Milton High School during my freshman year. For someone who has always struggled with math, I really appreciated the extra time and attentiveness she gave to me. She was willing to work after school to ensure that I understood the material and was fully prepared. In a public school with hundreds of kids, it was great to not get passed over. I can assure you that anyone who had her as a teacher would speak the same words about her. Firm but pushed you to do your best.
Going beyond the contributions of these unique teachers, there have been many more educators who’ve shaped the lives of each member of our team. Thank you all for your dedication, understanding and exemplary patience. Thank you teachers, each and every one!