Our son Jon has a new job out of Seattle that requires him to do a lot of travel from his home base in Ontario. The new job also comes with new responsibilities, like presenting developing products in public forums. This is not entirely new, as Jon has often had to make presentations for products in the past. But those products were always software programs that he and his team were developing, and the target audience was pretty small.

This new job requires that he presents his company’s products in much larger venues. To my way of thinking this is a natural development of his native gifts. He has quick mind and a facility with words and ideas that makes him a persuasive speaker. He also has a strongly independent character that allows him to approach each new situation with integrity, allowing him to speak with authority. I know this as one who has often had to go toe-to-toe with him on a number of issues as he was maturing. If I won the lion’s share of those debates it was only because in grace he conceded to my authority, not because I had the winning argument.

My wife and former students will tell you that when I am passionate about something that I am teaching, I am a force to be reckoned with. Pam’s friends and colleagues know that there are few who can so winningly put together a team and get them working together toward a common goal as she can. Jon seems to have a happy combination of her networking skills and my verbal ability. Put that together with Jon’s gift for computers and his drive for excellence and the results speak for themselves. Yeah, we are pretty proud of the kid.