Dr. Linda Powers, a professional development specialist, passed away on November 18, 2018 in Perry, Oklahoma. Linda was unmatched in her professionalism, her dedication, and her compassion. She will be deeply missed by all who were fortunate to know and love her. To honor our friend and colleague, John Scroggins collected the following remembrances and tributes. He shared these stories with family and friends as they came together in December to celebrate Linda’s life and accomplishments.
“Linda Powers was truly a special person. She touched the lives of so many people and everyone who knew her, loved her. As a colleague and a close friend, Linda would always take the time to sit down with you, look you in the eyes, listen to your concerns, and provide wise counsel. She would truly be “present” in the moment.
Linda was passionate about teaching, whether it was teaching her students or her colleagues. On countless occasions, when I mention Linda’s name in a conversation, someone will say, “Dr. Powers was my child’s favorite teacher.” I witnessed her devotion to bringing about school improvement at the Ponca City High School, within the Ponca City School District, and at schools where she served as a literacy consultant. She left a huge impact wherever she worked.” – Pat Morris
Pam Bradley shares a story of how Linda encouraged and empowered her to own her style and grow as a trainer.
“I was still somewhat new to Literacy First and learning the content. I was trying hard to imitate many of the other consultants’ style of delivery but I wasn’t comfortable yet.
When Linda asked me to co-train a leadership session with her, I was honored and said “yes!” I felt she believed in me and I studied hard all of the content she sent. She followed up with conference call to respond to my many questions. During the conversation, she began to name my positive attributes, empowering me to feel confident in my abilities. At one point in the conversation, she invited me to take the positives of others’ style when training, but to add my own experiences and to use my style of delivery because that’s what would make the participants connect with me. That’s what made my training authentic and that’s how I could “own” the material. It was simple advice but such wise counsel!
During the leadership training session, Linda, with a constant smile, provided reassurance throughout by following up on something I said with affirmation that encouraged and supported my statements and experiences. Through the years, I continued to call on Linda with questions and she always was happy to help. She mentored me into becoming not only a more polished and comfortable presenter, but a kinder and gentler person through her smile, actions, mannerisms, and her influence. Linda personified a quiet, gentle, comfortable confidence and strength. That’s just who she was.”
Patty Comstock shares,
One of the many educational buzzwords is “growth mindset.” Linda had a growth mindset even before the term was coined. She held high expectations for herself, her colleagues, and her students. “Good” was never enough for Linda. She sought opportunities to improve herself for the benefit of those around her. Her growth mindset made Linda a change agent, and that wasn’t always popular. The only time I saw Linda with fire in her eyes was when she was defending best practices for teaching and learning or during curriculum work. She would stand and fight for a program, a course, or a method that would benefit students. Linda knew her stuff and had the strength and character to be an advocate for change, and we are all richer for it. She was a leader.
Linda’s memory and life are shared here. Condolences may be sent to the family using the online guestbook at www.brown-duggerfuneralhome.com. Donations can be made to the Dr. Linda Powers Scholarship Fund c/o Perry Alumni Association, Attn: Peggy Haxton: P.O. Box 327, Perry OK 73077