Graduation Is a Family Affair This Month for One SCJ Father

 Submitted by SCJ Alliance

Scott Sawyer has had June 2016 marked on his calendar for a long time. Eighteen years to be exact, as his oldest son graduates from Olympia High School (OHS) this week.

Scott himself, Chief Project Officer at SCJ Alliance, graduated from Leadership Thurston County (LTC) last week, completing the 10-month program designed to develop informed, skilled and committed leaders throughout south Puget Sound. It’s a busy time for the 50-year-old engineer, one that will not only anchor lasting memories, but propel him toward the creation of new ones. 

Scott Sawyer celebrates his own graduation from Leadership Thurston County. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance
Scott Sawyer celebrates his own graduation from Leadership Thurston County. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance

LTC strives to give participants a broad understanding of the region’s complex issues and foster relationships and collaborative efforts to resolve the challenges of today and tomorrow. When asked about his goal for a future leadership role in our community, Scott was direct and sincere when he said, “Help people see that the community cares.”

“I didn’t understand the depth of the challenges, and I didn’t know we have such dedicated and talented people working to address them,” he said. “LTC challenged my perceptions, introduced me to inspiring people and gave me the confidence to get involved.”

“Having a team member participate in Leadership Thurston County expands our network and enhances our leadership core,” SCJ President Perry Shea said. “Scott has always had that drive to be involved, and that doesn’t end when he walks out the office door.”

Scott serves community organizations like Olympia Area Rowing, through his regular participation and leadership. Last weekend, he served as co-chair for Olympia Area Rowing’s annual participation in national Learn to Row Day.

Sawyer finds satisfaction in helping others, including mentoring his friend John Woodcock during the STP bicycle race. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance
Sawyer finds satisfaction in helping others, including mentoring his friend John Woodcock during the STP bicycle race. Photo courtesy: SCJ Alliance

And personally, through mentoring friends who aim to cycle STP, the annual ride from Seattle to Portland. “I like to do it when people ask for my help,” he said, referring to the four times he’s completed the 200-mile race. “A client and friend, John Woodcock, asked for tips last year. I didn’t plan on riding with him, but a few weeks beforehand, I decided to train.” 

And of course, those leadership skills come in handy as a father to two young sons, the second a freshman at OHS. The pride in his eyes was evident as he spoke of them.

LTC graduates were tasked with creating a six-word story about their experience during the course. Scott responded with a sentiment that echoes through his booming voice and can easily been seen in his many endeavors. “Leaders serve. Fear destroys. Love wins.”

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