Thanking Ohio’s Teachers

Our educators instill confidence and values in the next generation of business leaders
By Eric Harmon

There are not many meetings for our magazines that I get nervous about anymore. However, when we are able to get in front of some very successful people, it still brings some butterflies. Most often my opportunities to be a part of these high-profile meetings are when I sit in on interviews with our journalists.  

Being in the interview with Jim Tressel for this issue made me jittery. He is an iconic figure not just in football and Ohio, but of the modern day. I found I was able to relax, reconfirming the notion that it’s generally the most successful people who can provide others with the confidence to “be at the table.” Jim has accomplished much as a football coach, but what I walked away with was the passion and dynamic resolve he has for leading Youngstown State into the next decade.

I was fortunate enough to be able to attend YSU’s football camps in the early ‘90s as a part of a partnership the university had with local high schools. Jim, being head coach then, actively managed these youth camps. During our meeting I told him of the fond memories I had of those camps—remembering the dedication our high school football coaches exhibited while spending their summer hours with us, when most teachers would be on vacation. Jim provided this needed extra guidance, as did my Bay High educators, led by Tom Kaiser, who put more into the game and their students than I could ever comprehend back then.  

This is our education issue, and it would only be appropriate to thank all our teachers. Thank you for making what we did matter and for giving us all a better future than one we could create alone. Like the titans of industry, you instill the confidence in your students to reach for more. They will soon get their turn to lead and, best of all, it will be here in Ohio.