Your parents sent you to Catholic Schools throughout your youth. Why was Catholic education so important to them?
(I attended) my parish school all the way through eighth grade, then St. Thomas More, and Marquette. I think it was so important to them because it added another aspect to my education that was more than just the standard book learning. We had a faith-based component that made me the well-rounded person I am today. It taught me ethics and morality in a way I wouldn’t have known otherwise, and those things I’ve learned are just as important as the academics.
What was your experience at St. Thomas More?
I loved my time there. It helped shape me into the person that I am today. A lot of the experiences that I had really trained me for my time in college as well as my professional career.
What kinds of activities were you involved in?
I was very involved and did a variety of things. The main extracurricular that I had there and still do to this day is the sports public address announcer. I do the stadium announcing for all the varsity volleyball, boys and girls basketball, and football games. I love going back to the school and volunteering my time there. I was also involved in theatre, student council, and the honor society. I helped with technology support in the school. I really tried to get involved everywhere. It ended up being more about having to say no to things.
How many games do you think you’ve announced?
Last year, I did my 400th.
In high school, what made you want to be involved in so many activities?
I think for me, it’s always about trying to give back. We all have our gifts and our talents that we’re given in life, and people opened doors for me and helped me along the way. Eeven from the beginning, it was important for me to give back to others. I wanted to be involved to make my community better and found it very rewarding.
Was there any teacher there that had a particularly profound impact on you?
There were so many. It’s one of the reasons I really enjoy the school. It’s a small school but there really is an immense care for the individual. Everyone knew everyone; not just who you were as a student, but who you were individually. Having that personal relationship with so many people and them knowing what you were going through was very impactful. They really all lived those religious teachings of not just being an institution but caring about the students that are at their school.
What was the most important lesson that you learned about your faith while at St. Thomas More?
That there are no small actions, there are only actions that can be done with a tremendous amount of love. It’s so important as we look at our day to day lives to realize that everything we do is in the details of life. It’s easy to bypass a lot of the small things, but I learned that when you step back and realize that every one of those small actions is meaningful, that helps us realize what really matters.
Were you interested in engineering from your time at St. Thomas More?
I was for sure interested in it from my time there. They have a program called Project Lead the Way, an engineering class curriculum for the high school level. They were the first school in the state to get Project Lead the Way certified. It was a perfect fit for me, I loved science and math.
What has been the biggest blessing you’ve seen during this unprecedented COVID-19 crisis?
I think for all of us, it’s made us slow down. For my wife and I, our schedules are typically both very full. We’re busy with work and always on the go. When this first started, our calendar was all of a sudden wide open and gave us the chance we’d never really had to just be together. We got a chocolate lab puppy during COVID, and that has been so fun and brought us closer together.