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7 Questions with Steve Buuck

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Jonno White

7 Questions with Steve Buuck

Name: Steve Buuck

Current title: Chief Executive Officer

Current organisation: Faith Lutheran Middle School & High School

Steve began his professional career as a high school football coach and English teacher but moved into administration after 6 years. He has been a high school administrator for 26 years and currently serves as the CEO of Faith Lutheran Middle School & High School in fabulous Las Vegas, NV. Faith Lutheran is the largest Lutheran school in the country and the largest private school in the history of Nevada. Steve is blessed by his wife Julie, their three adult children, son-in-law, and two grandchildren.

1. What have you found most challenging as a leader in the education sector?

Obviously the past 10 months leading a school through the COVID-19 has been among the most challenging things I've faced - especially since we've been a leader in bringing employees and students back to campus faster than most.

2. How do you structure your work days from waking up to going to sleep?

I start with reading Scripture on the Bible app, checking my email, getting ready for school, keeping my own calendar and writing all my own correspondence, attending student activities at nights, and trying to get 8 hours of sleep each night so I have the energy to serve God while serving others each day.

3. What's the most recent significant leadership lesson you've learned?

You need your people much more than they need you.

4. What's one book that has had a profound impact on your leadership so far? Can you please briefly tell the story of how that book impacted your leadership?

The Bible is the obvious answer of course as its timeless truths speak into my life each and every day. From a secular standpoint, Jim Collins' Good to Great remains a timeless classic as we strive to be better today than yesterday in all that we do.

5. How do you find and keep great leaders in the education sector?

I think it's the duty of all leaders to reach out to men and women they know and encourage them to consider educational leadership. The simple yet powerful act of telling someone "I think you'd be a great principal, or athletic director, or head of school" can be very impactful.

6. What's most important as a leader in the education sector for developing a culture of wellbeing in your staff and students?

Take care of them as they are your most important asset. We are in the people business and showing a genuine concern for people is critical. While time worn, it's still valid: People don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.

7. What is one meaningful story that comes to mind from your time as a leader in the education sector so far?

We had a student who came to us for high school from China. He was an atheist. His senior year, he asked me to baptize him at my church. I'll never forget that.