Susan Colville-Hall, University of Akron, Professor Emeritus
“There are some who bring a light so great to the world, that even after they have gone, the light remains” (Leanin’ Tree.) That is so true of our dear friend, Theresa Minick. It’s been almost a year since the passing of our beloved Theresa (June, 2020) and we members of OFLA have missed her greatly. Theresa brought us together in so many ways. First, she helped us celebrate the language profession with her creative ideas to engage everyone in language interaction and culture learning. Second, she thrust new ideas in technology at us and helped us make sense of new-fangled gadgets and procedures through professional development. Third, Theresa seized the opportunity to fund summer workshops for teachers of specific interests and made these opportunities possible for many of Ohio’s teachers. Finally, Theresa was generous with her time and took on the necessary dissemination of state standards and the sharing of curriculum development. While these acts of professional service were ongoing, Theresa taught her own students at Kent State University and served on the board of several other important international non-profit organizations, such as Global Ties- Akron, the International Institute of Akron, and the International Institute Women’s Board. She was also a member of Women’s Interfaith Spiritual Heritage (WISH) and a strong advocate and friend of the Arts in Akron.
Theresa Minick was a facilitator, a mentor, a teacher, and a caring colleague to so many of us. Service to others was certainly a focus of Theresa’s “raison d’être.” Anita Moorjami stated beautifully, “In the tapestry of life we are all connected. Each of us is a gift to those around us, helping each other to be who we are, weaving a perfect picture together.” Theresa did just that in our profession. She brought us together, through OFLA opportunities and the services she helped provide. Theresa energized our professional learning and sharing, first through NEOLA and our OFLA listserv. She connected us like a master magician or weaver, and observed and tallied the threads of those interconnections, touching our lives and our organization deeply. Her legacy will live on for generations to come.
To honor Theresa Minick’s memory, OFLA has created an opportunity for individuals wanting to do so to donate to the Technology Professional Development Fund in her name. Many of us have benefitted from the generosity of our profession in the past. Now is the time to contribute, to make this a living tribute to Theresa Minick, one that will benefit young OFLA members. All contributions will become her legacy and will live on for generations of OFLA members to come.