About-Baker: I went to most of grammar school and all of high school at Baker. My best memories are of the music program. I was in Mr. Deen's Elementary Chorus in the 5th Grade and again in his High School Choral Club and music ensembles. That led me into many stints as church choir member and wedding and funeral singer. I played oboe in Mr. Robinson's band for three years but opted for all vocal music after my brother Lee, the band's drum major, graduated and went to FSU on a music scholarship. I was on the newspaper as advertising manager and in several clubs such as Quill and Scroll and Tri-Hi-Y. Other memories include friends, many of whom were Army kids who had lived around the world, or foreign nationals who ended up at Ft. Benning via their mothers' marriages to military men. That was the seed of my interest in languages and cultures, which has led me to my current profession as a teacher of English to non-native speakers of English. There was also a lot of wholesome fun and a some memorable teachers. Those were innocent if unexciting times, but worth living. They prepared the way for a life of integrity and wonder for life's new experiences that followed.
After-Baker: I'm a professor of EAP (English for Academic Purposes) at one of the largest community colleges in the country, Miami-Dade Community College. In 1994, I went back to the university after 30 years of working in the business sector and earned a Master's Degree in Education with a specialty in TESOL (Teacher of English to Speakers of Other Languages.)It was a case of being in the right place at the right time since Miami is full of non-native speakers and our college instructs more than 30,000 of them!
I did continue to sing for many years, both in college and in church and community choruses after reaching adulthood. My years under Mr. Deen's tutelage continued to pay off in personal pleasure and satisfaction.
Other than that, I am not married. I was once for a few years, but I don't have any children. My greatest enjoyment outside of my work is the zoo. I have been a volunteer docent at Miami's Metrozoo for more than 20 years. It is a relatively new and cageless zoo with plenty of room for the animals to move around and with primary emphasis on preservation of endangered species. This designation gives me the unexpected opportunity to act as a grass roots ambassador for conservation, a matter of primary importance to me and for the future.
About-Baker: I was in the music programs: band, chorus, concert choir, triple trio, other ensembles.
After-Baker: I'm an unmarried, childless college language professor in Miami, FL.
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