Chris may be new to the CB School Board (elected September 8, 2015) but certainly not new to living in CB — and making a difference in the CB community. As a note: he joined fellow TJ Alumni David Coziahr &Troy Arthur who also serve on the Board.
Chris (TJ ’95) currently serves as the Dean and Director of Records at Iowa Western Community College (IWCC.) Following high school, he earned a degree in General Studies from IWCC, a BA in Education from Simpson, and a Master’s in Organizational Leadership from Gonzaga University. Chris then returned home to Council Bluffs to work for IWCC.
Chris was busy during his years at TJ in sports and in vocal and instrumental music: starred in musicals such as Brigadoon and Carousel participated all four years in Concert and Swing Choir participated all four years in Concert, Marching and Jazz Band played 4 years Baseball, played 3 years Basketball played 2 years Track.
Chris continues his commitment to education through his service to the Council Bluffs Schools…and is a busy family man.
Once a week you will find him picking up his youngest daughter, Emma, from the String Sprouts Program in the CB Schools. Chris is a huge fan of the district’s partnership with the Omaha Conservatory of Music. “Sprouts” is a 5-year program that students begin in pre-school. Preschoolers are given lessons and a free violin for use. He shared that Emma’s practicing is going as well as can be expected — and perhaps there is some bribery (candy) involved in exchange for Emma’s practice time at home….”a little bribery…I mean positive reinforcement…can go a long way.”
You will also see Chris at school board meetings, school events, shuttling his girls to tumbling, soccer, basketball, and of course, Emma’s violin lessons. Chris still loves sports — in his (very) spare time you can find him at the gym or perhaps that rare game of basketball. Chris’s wife Lea is originally from Philadelphia, but now a proud Council Bluffs resident and community member.
When Chris reflects upon his experiences he says he is “humbled thinking about the sheer number of people associated with the school district that influenced my life.” Chris goes on to say, “I spent a lot of time at school…great teachers, experiences, there are so many times a teacher or a coach went out of his or her way to explain something, challenge me, motivate me. It is a testament to the cumulative effect that a school full of dedicated, caring and skilled school district teachers and staff can have on a young person.”
Chris urges all of us to “give something back, be an advocate, and get involved in the community.”