During my nearly 20 years as in-house counsel with Adams 12 Five Star School District, I worked with five different superintendents, with vastly different leadership styles and personalities. I learned from each, but loved and befriended only one. It was “the little big things” about Jack Knight that endeared me to him and made an impact on me. I supposed it’s not surprising that he’s especially important to me – he’s the man who hired me, with the purpose, he told me, of “doing things better.” A simple idea, but profoundly different than the “highfalutin” (I had no idea until I just checked the Web that highfalutin is a “real” word) cost-saving, education-improving, morale-boosting ideas other superintendents managed to over-complicate, explain to death, and devastate forests with their requirements of report after report.
I learned a couple of weeks ago that Jack is struggling with his health. Actually that’s an understatement – the reports I’m getting are dire indeed. I’m very sad, but thinking about happier times I spent with Jack is buoying me up.
Each Friday, we’d debrief “LA Law” as though we were reviewing a complex calculation involving the district budget, or a critical personnel matter. We took the TV show very seriously indeed, and the week wasn’t complete until we had relived the best parts of the hour we had each spent, glued to the TV, in our own homes. Read the rest of this entry