No teacher ever took an interest in me the way Mr. Derm McDonald did when I was in grade 9 – the year that everything changed for me.
I guess I was doing OK before I met him, but I lacked confidence. I feel like my life could have headed in one of many directions…not all good ones. For the first time ever, a teacher really “got” me, and he saw what I needed: to be inspired. He helped me harness some really great skills…things I rely on 30 years later. Like the importance of word choice; the ability to tell a story; effortless confidence when addressing a large group of people; and humour as a tool to help people warm to you. Above all, he taught me about integrity. It was much later in life that the things I learned from him actually became clear. He was one hell of a teacher.
So, thank you, Mister Mac. Sensei. My life is pretty rich, and I am grateful to you for helping to shape that.