History occasionally provides us with persons of uncommon excellence who not only succeed, but utterly dominate their chosen field of endeavor. Many of us are collectively inspired by these types of exceptionally successful people. We admire their skill, determination, drive, and passion to be the very best. Such persons of uncommon excellence are often showcased in professional athletics. Consider Babe Ruth on the baseball field, Michael Jordan on the basketball court, Jack Nicklaus on the golf course, or Muhammad Ali in the boxing ring. Each of these athletes dominated their respective sport at the peak of their careers.
Great military leaders such as General Patton, Napoleon, and Alexander the Great exhibited seemingly endless supplies of courage, confidence, and fortitude. Such action-oriented leaders had no patience for excuses or the status quo. Even rare politicians…yes politicians, had the unusual ability to inspire, unite, and overcome seemingly impossible odds. Consider Winston Churchill during the Battle of Britain who united a nation to face down Hitler’s seemingly unstoppable Blitzkrieg, or Abraham Lincoln who following one of the bloodiest battles in American history exhibited steely resolve while delivering one of the greatest speeches in our great nation’s history, the Gettysburg Address. Such individuals give us glimpses into the astonishing capacity of human beings to excel even when facing extraordinarily overwhelming challenges.
The geopolitical climate in 2022 is not without modern day challenges. During the ongoing global conflict of political ideologies, more serious types of global conflict are never far beneath the surface. Various parts of the world regrettably endure tyranny, war, exploitation, and unimaginable horrors. For far too many global members of the human family, the concepts of freedom, liberty, and justice seem like imaginary concepts.
While our American constitutional republic and representative democracy is not perfect, many consider it to be the best form of government that the world has ever known. Freedom, liberty, and justice are not merely words to Americans. We hold these values sacred and continually strive to form a more perfect union. Within the greatest nation that the world has ever known stands the mighty state of Texas. The economic gross domestic product (GDP) of Texas dwarfs that of most nations around the world. Our dynamic economy is a product of both the dynamic culture and the dynamic people of Texas. Texans exhibit a seemingly dichotomous blend of rugged individualism and southern hospitality. Texans are widely perceived as a tough people who get the job done no matter the circumstances. Many believe that Texas is the greatest state in the union. Additionally, nowhere in Texas will you find more dynamic people than within the Weatherford College service area.
On a global scale, our people exhibit an uncommon excellence. They work hard, love fiercely, and strive to make this world an even better place. In addition to freedom, liberty, and justice, words like family and community elicit powerful emotional responses among our citizens. Our teachers, first responders, healthcare workers, and so many others boldly labor with unyielding determination to improve the human condition one person at a time.
I never met Babe Ruth or Muhammad Ali, but I have met many of the extraordinary people of the Weatherford College service area, and they too are examples of uncommon excellence. Their collective intense determination and dedication to a cause greater than themselves is inspirational. My heroes are not movie stars, professional athletes, or famous musicians. My heroes are those seemingly ordinary citizens who with steely resolve dedicate themselves to a greater purpose and who live a daily life of truly uncommon excellence.
Tod Allen Farmer
President, Weatherford College