Charles City, Iowa – Home is where the heart is.
For new superintendent of Charles City Public Schools Mike Fisher, it’s a bit of a homecoming. That may seem odd as Fisher isn’t from Charles City, he isn’t even from Iowa or the United State for that matter.
Fisher was born in South Korea.
South Korea isn’t where he considers home. As an adopted three-year-old, Fisher found himself dropped in the middle of America’s Heartland: Oskaloosa, Iowa. Fisher says that is where he considers home and it’s because looks don’t matter.
Fisher brings his unique perspective to Charles City. Fisher began his first official day as Superintendent of Charles City Public Schools today and this town is his new home.
“A small, scenic rural town with so many points of pride. It’s a beautiful community,” he says.
This was one of a couple of reasons why Fisher chose Charles City as his next haven. The other was diversity.
“As you come through town, you see students and people of different color. You see people of different towns and different countries,” Fisher says. “You hear people speaking different languages. It was a way for my wife and I to continue our love of that.”
The only way Fisher has continued his passion for eduction was a firm foundation growing up with positive role models that spoke to him at an early age. The consensus was he needed to look into the service industry. He chose education over ministry and law enforcement. It also helped that his mother, aunt, cousin and wife are all teachers. Because of a strong presence around him, Fisher understands a unique definition of leadership: “Leadership is not stripes on your arm or you get knighted or something. It’s about showing other people their potential so clearly they see it themselves.”
He brings his view on leadership, diverse background and positive attitude to Charles City. Some of his main focuses are post-secondary schooling, career and college readiness and community outreach. He plans to have sit-down conversations with all faculty and staff within the school district by January 1.
That seems like a lot of work, doesn’t it?
Fisher says it’s all about relationships.
“I want to get out and meet people. I want to shake hands and see faces,” Fisher says. “I want to dive in and see what Charles City is all about, including the surrounding communities.”
While Fisher might have to use his phone GPS to get from one place to another across Charles City, there’s a clear understanding he and his family have found their home. Sometimes it doesn’t matter where you’re born, what matters is where you’re from and where your heart lies.