Heiniger - Mullet - 10 Year Photo Heiniger - Big Pike - 10 Year PhotoSteve Heiniger is one of those people you never forget.  His self-deprecating sense of humor and ability to find humor in every situation make him easy to spot.  This is not really why he makes my list.  Steve has been a role-model for me in life.  His faith, his devotion to family, his leadership at school, his tireless work at his church, and his devotion to making the world better set him apart from the masses.

Sturgeon and I have taught all the Heiniger children (now that his youngest is on our team this year); you can always pick out the Heiniger kids, they are the ones who are role models for their peers and that you could trust with the credit cards and car keys.  Each of the kids is their own person, but each has the common trait of goodness that you wish every person in the world possessed.  They are always the easiest and shortest Tecumseh counselor interviews, because they are exactly what you want impressionable 7th grade students led by.  Dana (the most patient person in the world) and Steve raised great children and as we say in our building; the apple does not fall far from the tree.

I am sorry for all the grief that I have and continue to cause Steve in his role as my department chair.  Steve has listened to every diatribe about one policy or another with patience and understanding; he doesn’t always agree with me, but he lets me finish anyway.  Steve is completely void of self-promotion and is not interested in grandstanding achievements; he is only interested in advancing student learning and making it possible for the teachers within his department to reach this goal. Steve is heavily involved in the leadership of his church.  His leadership is beyond sitting behind a desk; he, and his family, feed the homeless, work in the food bank, show up to every event, and even travel to Columbia to help raise the lives of those that most need it.  His heart is twice as big as most people’s.

We have had many conversations about kids, finances, and life; I have never told him that these talks mean a great deal to me and his thoughts carry a lot of weight in my world.  So thank you my friend.