No, the philosophy prof who wore the same suit to every class the first semester and another one for the second – he doesn’t count. These are ones who really shaped my thinking.
- Ethel McLennan, high school English teacher. She instilled a love of grammar I’ve relied on religiously the rest of my life.
- Vincent Ostrom, political science professor. He was keen on nurturing independent scholars who could critically assess a proposition and articulate their own position.
- Lavern Berry, high school student teaching summer workshops at the Dayton Museum of Natural History. He was a star who then vanished from sight. Still, his two-week chemistry course got me through a semester in college, and his advice about learning in general was something a kid like me needed.
- Professora Hughes, high school Spanish. The best.
- Jane Meyer, high school visual art. Much of what I learned in four years with her got applied throughout my career as a journalist when I designed pages and cropped photos.
- Harold Weiner, middle school visual art. Opened my eyes to modernism.
- Helen Rayner, third grade. I’m still fond of jack-in-the-pulpits.
- Miss Gillespie, sixth-grade English. She broke our hearts when she moved to a high school across town and again a bit later when we heard of her engagement. Did I mention she was beautiful and fresh out of college?
- Swami Lakshmy, Poconos ashram.
- Dick Allen, college creative writing.
Any great teachers in your past?