We Are Lyman - Alumni Newsletter
Greyhounds, we are honored to have Al Latimer from the class of 1975 as the first Alumni Spotlight feature. Please share with fellow Greyhounds as we grow the Lyman High School Alumni Network.
Tell us about your journey from your Lyman High School days to now.
The faculty and staff at Lyman helped me discover my potential, apply myself and aim higher. Unfortunately, I must embarrassingly admit that I was academically lazy and easily distracted and didn’t set a high enough standard of achievement for myself. I am so grateful that my teachers recognized that fact and woke me up to my potential before I became a casualty of missed opportunities and regret. There was one phrase I heard countless times from several teachers that really resonated with me, and gave me a better perspective on my work ethic. That was, “you can’t put a nickel’s worth of effort and get a dollar’s worth of pay” I also formed my lifelong friendships while at Lyman.
After graduating from Lyman, I attended Ferrum Junior (Community College) in Virginia, where I played defensive back on the football team. Subsequent to my two years there I received an athletic scholarship to Clemson University. After Clemson, I had the great fortune to play in the National Football League for five years: Philadelphia Eagles, San Francisco 49ers, Detroit Lions. While in the NFL I transferred to Walsh College of Accountancy and Business Administration. In Troy Michigan and earned a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.
During my traditional career I have held executive and senior management roles in Sports Marketing and Event Management, Legislative Affairs, and Economic Development. Currently, I am an Economic Development Executive—I devise and align strategies and resources to get more business to locate in, and more existing businesses to expand in the state, the outcome of which, is that more jobs are created for Florida citizens. Over the 40-year span since leaving Lyman I have worked for five Governors.
What does the phrase “We Are Lyman” mean to you?
To me, We Are Lyman is a declaration that graduates are prepared to take on any challenge, we are different and unique group because of the experiences we shared together at the school. We have a deep sense of school pride and you can expect more from us.
What does being a Lyman High School alumnus mean to you?
At Lyman I learned what my potential is. Today, I feel that I have realized the potential I was made aware of that I possessed at Lyman over 40 years ago. Without the encouragement of my teachers I never would have dared to dream as big as I did. The foundational education I received at Lyman combined with the additional academic training I received in college, gave me great confidence that I could take on any job, assignment, or task and not only succeed but excel.
Being a Lyman Alumnus means that I am a part of a group of graduates that persevered through the rigors of academic study to earn my diploma. It was the first level of qualification needed to obtain a higher skilled job. It is an anchor point for me.
How did your time at Lyman shape your decisions and choices in your life and your career?
At Lyman I discovered my passion for literature and writing. The choice of words one uses is critical to communicating the intended meaning. Going through that process plus the analysis I had to go through to solve math problems and develop and test hypothesis in science classes served as a model for, and gave me a strong foundation for analyzing and making good business decisions. Lyman was a microcosm of society where I observed the impact that wright and wrong choice had on students’ live and future. Those examples helped me to decide to plot and stir my life along a positive course that has been immensely rewarding for me.
Who were your favorite teachers or staff at Lyman and why?
My list of favorite teachers included Mr. Smith (History), Ms. Barnes (English), Mr. costs (Civics), and Ms. Williams (English). There we others that were good instructors, but I mention these in particular because they keep telling me that I could have a bright future if I would apply myself.
If you could come back to Lyman to teach a class what would you call it?
I would teach a course called, “Make a Game Plan for Life”. It is a plan, of course that would be updated periodically but the basic idea is to never be surprised by the outcomes of your actions. Every decision a student makes will either take him/her toward their goal or further away from it. A Game Plan helps one have a clear set of goals, be disciplined in their pursuit, form good habits aligned with where they want to go, and be intentional and confident about the direction they are headed.
(Photo: Bluepint Intergovernmental Agency)
Thank you Al Latimer for being our first Alumni spotlight!
Are you a Greyhound with a story to share?
Contact the Athletic Director, Russel Williams Russel_Williams@scps.k12.fl.us for a feature in the Alumni Spotlight.