Hi There! My name is Katherine Lynde. I am currently enrolled in this course and am excited about the opportunities offered by it and the people I'm going to meet during it. The photograph above is the one taken by the more talented of the two Lifetouch School Portraits photographers sent to Blacksburg High School (BHS) to take our 2016-2017 school pictures. I asked my husband if my eyes looked too crinkled in this photograph, giving away my advanced age, and he said, "Not at all." In fact, I know he believes smiles are not genuine unless the subject's eyes are crinkled; accordingly, you know I must have been happy that the photographer gave me a compliment before he took the photograph.
I was born in Richmond, Virginia, but I grew up in Lynchburg, Virginia. I'm one of four children born to Richard and Elizabeth Snell. My parents will be celebrating their 72nd anniversary in August. We like to think that my parents had two sets of children: an earlier set of boys, and a later set of girls. I am the oldest girl.
Stuart and I have been together for just over thirty years and will celebrate our 29th anniversary in April. We have three children and two grandchildren. You'll find our wonderful family in the picture grid I've included below.
Our oldest son, Will, and his family appear in the upper-left photo. Will is actually from my previous marriage, but Will feels like he's always been Stuart's son. Will and family are currently living with us. After residing in Richmond for quite a while, he and his wife, Katie, have returned to Blacksburg so their son, Jake, can go to school in this area. They hope to find a great place of their own soon. Our daughter, Liz, and her family are pictured in the upper-right corner. Liz graduated from Radford University and is now the marketing director for Coldwell Banker Real Estate and is owner of PixEl Designs. Our youngest son, James-Michael (JM to us and James to his friends) is the young man on the right in the largest photograph. Stuart took this picture while JM was performing in a BHS theater production. JM is a junior at BHS and is heavily involved in the arts. He is in the marching and symphonic bands, has been inducted as an International Thespian, and sings in the choir. He will be auditioning for Madrigals this spring.
This is where we live. As I said above, now there are six of us living in the house, but it's great to have a five-year-old running around here again. JM was five when we moved in, so it's like old times.
I graduated from Jefferson Forest High School a long time ago; as a matter of fact, it was brand new when I started my freshman year. After being schooled in customer service and general life lessons for fifteen years at Central Fidelity Bank, I started my college journey at New River Community College (NRCC). Stuart's graduate studies at Virginia Tech brought us to Blacksburg, and, with the move, we decided it was high time I furthered my education and enjoyed the opportunities a college degree would open for me. I graduated from NRCC with my A.A.S. in General Studies and transferred directly to Virginia Tech, where I earned my B.A. and M.A. degrees in English. I graduated on May 10th and started with Montgomery County Public Schools on May 12th. This is my twentieth year as an English teacher at BHS, serving the last eleven as department chair and lead teacher.
I started pursuing an M.S. in Educational Leadership at Radford University last January, so it's been a full year. But, wait for it . . . great news . . . I graduate in May! It's been an invigorating experience to take so many graduate courses while I've been busy at BHS. Becoming a student again, especially one who is working hard to manage it all, has made me a better teacher.
I began the program because the time was just right. I had experienced a trifecta: 1) I was truly inspired during my daughter's Radford University graduation ceremony; it not only took me back but also took me forward, 2) my principal mysteriously chose that window of inspiration to encourage my move to administration, and 3) my curriculum supervisor announced her impending retirement. I was admitted to Radford before a month passed. I owe a great deal to my principal, Brian Kitts. Without his support, this may not have happened.
After twenty years as both a teacher and a department leader, it's time for me to influence the educational experiences of both students and teachers on a broader scale. Stuart has been telling me this for several years. But, as I said above, this is my time.
The first two images represent my dilemma--I haven't quite figured in which direction I see myself landing next year. I do hope it will be one or the other. In the next five-to-ten years, I hope to be leading a school.
Some Things That Truly Bug Me
I cannot stand a dirty floor, not even the smallest bit of anything. I am disturbingly obsessive about vacuuming. Stuart sometimes wishes there was a cure for my apparent addiction.
As an English teacher, I'm pretty critical of grammar mistakes, especially in published works and professional advertising.
Being late anywhere stresses me out, and I don't like when people make me wait. Patience is not one of my virtues.
I hate finding myself in paralyzing moments of indecision. I actually had to send this photo to Liz and ask her opinion. Just so you know, I bought the one on the right.
Some Important Things in My Life
Stuart and I love spending time with Jake and Lexi. Having all of us together in Blacksburg makes this a frequent occurrence.