My Life Mission: Love God. Love People. Love the World.
Husband: I have been married to the most beautiful, caring and compassionate woman in the world since July 17th, 2004. She loves God, this world and everyone in it. If you meet her you will love her. Everyone does. She is my most trusted advisor and confidant. Her smile lights up my life.
Father: I have been blessed with two incredible bundles of joy and energy. Emma Joy is my oldest daughter and Ruby Joan came along about 3 years later. They fill my life with excitement and adventure. I learn from each of them daily and am a better man because they are in my life. They have their mother’s beauty and compassionate nature and their father’s reckless abandon.
Dreamer: I am a dreamer in every aspect of my life. I envision a creative future and a better world. I believe that we all can have a profound impact if we chose to dream big and work hard to realize our potential. Here are a few things I have dreamer about:
- Adventure… I am almost always dreaming of adventure
- Hiking the highest mountain ranges on every continent
- Traveling around the world in 80 days, by land and sea (no planes)
- Climbing Everest
- Taking Jenny back to the Romantic Road in southern Germany
- Starting a school that uses education to open up and assist in the development of under privileged areas of the world
- Rock climbing on the islands of Thailand
- Missionary work across all continents
- Visiting Tibet again… often
- Date nights with my wife each week
- Raising up the next generation of leaders in excellence
- Engaged students… in ever classroom… every day
- Learning to speak Mandarin Chinese
- Raising my kids in a foreign speaking culture for a few years
- Juggling flaming torches while riding a unicycle
- Taking Emma & Ruby on trips around the globe
Climber: Climbing is an incredible metaphor for life. Everything worth accomplishing in life requires preparation, determination, intense focus and a willingness to push yourself to the limit. I approach life like a series of really challenging, intense and exhilarating climbs. At the end of each successive challenge waits a beautiful summit. The scrapes and scars gathered along the journey are forgotten at the top and remembered only later as memorials to what was accomplished.
Servant: The greatest and most influential leader to ever live was Jesus Christ. He started a movement that spanned the globe, has endured for two millenia, inspired followers to sacrifice their lives and was initiated without the help of media, political authority or social networks. Whatever your opinions about Jesus, his influence and effectiveness are undeniable. Although frequently maligned by detractors, and misrepresented by His followers, His message of hope, reconciliation, love and peace is incredible. I have chosen to follow not only his teachings as a moral compass and framework for my life, but also his leadership as a model for my leadership.
Teacher: Simply put, I love to teach! To be a good teacher you must first and foremost be a learner. I am a voracious reader and absolutely love to learn about virtually everything. I am passionate to learn about our world and sharing new knowledge with others. I am in awe with the diversity and complexity of creation and inspired by the yearning of the human mind to know.
My Influences: To lead effectively, and to expect others to follow, a leader must be an excellent follower. As mentioned above, I follow the teaching of Jesus. But I also have been blessed to have had numerous mentors, coaches and leaders who were willing to invest in my life: to help lead me through challenges, inspire me to achieve, and push me to reach my potential. Here is a sampling of the people who have invested in my life and whom I follow:
- Charles Gianotti – my dad
- Ross McIntee – my grandfather
- Chris Sloane – one of my mentors
- Lynne Erdle – one of my mentors
- Pierre DuPlessis – my pastor
The following list of a few of the people who, through their books, blogs, podcasts and twitter feeds I have been profoundly influenced.
- Chip & Dan Heath – Authors, Made to Stick, Switch
- Marcus Buckingham – Author and speaker, Go Put Your Strengths to Work
- Bill Hybels – Author and pastor, Axiom, Courageous Leadership
- Rick Dufour – Educator and author, Professional Learning Communities
- Mike Schmoker – Educator and author, Focus, Results Now
- Andy Stanley – Pastor and author, The Best Question Ever
- Steve Sample – President of USC, The Contrarians Guide to Leadership
- Tom Peters – Author, Excellence
- Jim Collins – Author, Good to Great
- C.S. Lewis – Author, Mere Christianity, Weight of Glory
My Path: Born a Pastor’s Kid, I moved around a lot. After college I lived in South Korea for a few years. I returned to the USA and became an educator, first as a history teacher, then and Assistant Principal and eventually a High School Principal in the Greece Central School District, near Rochester New York. In the summer of 2014 I became a pastor at The Father’s House, a church in Rochester New York, where I continue to live out the mission God has given me.