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Different points of view

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Kirk and Jared Freeman recently completed "Sweatin' the Small Stuff," a book regarding leadership. Jason Moon Photo. [Order this photo]
* Father-son duo self-publish book on leadership

For Kirk Freeman, researching material for novels has become a tradition.

Freeman has already written three books -- focusing on education.

But for his fourth endeavor, Freeman enlisted some help close to his heart.

His son Jared.

The duo just completed, "Sweatin' the Small Stuff," a self-published book focusing on leadership.

While putting together the idea for the book, Kirk and Jared specifically didn't want it to be a "how-to" regarding leadership.

"When you do the little things, it causes the ripple effect," Kirk said.

To avoid creating a "how-to," the pair collected stories from people who "exemplified" leadership by doing the little things.

"The goal is the reader will have an indirect dialogue to be part of the learning process," Kirk said.

It features several people telling individual stories that tie to leadership. Local celebrities featured include Bob Medworth, Dr. Ken Sproul, Sharon Koehler, Pat Rady, David Thomas and Jon Stuckey.

"We really believe they made a difference in people's lives," Kirk said. "We chose people from all walks of life."

Only 152 pages, the book features 14 different interviews and several stories delving into the ups and downs of life.

"We did not want to sugar coat it," Kirk said.

Each chapter begins with scripture Kirk researched for each story, hoping to tie in Christian principles to the collections.

"It's an inspirational book," Kirk said. "You walk away with the feeling this is what you want to do to be a better leader.

"We're just hoping to be able to have people read this and feel inspired. This was one that came from the soul."

As the book was being prepared, Jared was still stationed in Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio.

A member of the Air Force, he will soon obtain the rank of First Lieutenant.

The 2003 Northview High School graduate and 2008 Air Force grad said collecting the information -- which took 14 months -- in addition to putting it together was one of the most difficult things he has ever done.

"We wanted to word it to where people picking it up would get what it means," Jared said. "It took a lot longer than I thought it would, but we wanted to be on the same page.

"I was very big on not wanting this to be a 'how-to' book. Everybody has their own spin on things. We didn't want to repackage something that has been done before."

Once they had concluded their interviews, Kirk and Jared sat down together and pooled the information.

"The people in the book were the people we decided on," Kirk said.

Both Kirk and Jared also played the role of editor while putting together the information.

A 1978 Clay City High School graduate, Kirk earned all of his educational degrees at Indiana State University.

He eventually gravitated back to Clay County in 1991 to take the position of principal at Northview High School for five years. From there, he was principal at Van Buren Elementary School for three years.

He also served as principal at Linton High School and was the assistant superintendent at the Greencastle Community School Corporation at one time. He also taught social studies at NHS but has since gotten into the business of consulting.

Current Superintendent of the United Methodist Church West Central District Tom True also wrote the forward for the book.

The book has been endorsed by Brad Long, who portrayed Buddy in the movie "Hoosiers," as well as former Air Force Academy football coach Fisher DeBerry.

The book can currently be ordered online at amazon.com and should be in stores later in June. In addition, the book will be available soon at www.kirkfreemanconsulting.com.

Kirk added The Open Door, a Christian Book Store located in Terre Haute, has contacted him about a possible book signing in the future.

Jared added he would be interested in writing again in the future.

"I might do this again," he said. "I was pretty hesitant at first, but I really enjoyed writing. It was a different challenge."

Check these out

Kirk Freeman has also written three other novels in his career.

They include:

* "Back to the Basics: The Three R's," dealing with Relevance, Responsibility and Rewarding excellence. The book was written in 2005 and is specifically for teachers and parents,

* "Putting the 'I' back in team," through Power Publishing. The book was written in 2007 and focuses on teamwork and the uniqueness of individuals. Former Indiana Pacer Clark Kellogg and Indiana University standout Brian Evans both endorsed the book, and

* "Owning Responsibility ... The Perfect Process," written in 2008. The book focuses on teaching children responsibility in today's world and was written specifically for teachers and parents.

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Dr. Freeman is an excellent role model. He was my high school teacher! I was good friends with Jared and know how great of people they are. I would recommend buying this book!

-- Posted by Criminology08 on Thu, Jun 3, 2010, at 1:16 AM

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