My surprise visit to Portsmouth's Woodrow Wilson High was due to two seniors who work in the main office. William Bagwell and Ryan Norman sent me an email about their principal saying they, "Would like to nominate Timothy E. Johnson with the People Taking Action Award, because this man opened our eyes to have hope that we can achieve great things in life."
The two students didn't always feel that way about their academic futures. but over the past two years of helping out in the school office, a special bond developed with the principal.
The email continues, "It was his wisdom that stuck with me everyday that every time I encounter a struggle, we will always win." Johnson became more than a principal to these students. He mentored them as they explained in the email. "He exposed us around very successful people to let us know that everyone has their struggles in life but it's about how you overcome them. We are on the path of graduation and getting our high school diploma.Before Mr.Johnson came into our lives we probably would have dropped out of high school."
As I read part of the email to the office staff, it was clear Johnson was touched by the student's words. "He also taught to never say the words never and can't because once you feel defeated you will be defeated."
Johnson was almost at a loss for words. "I tell you I'm, I'm kinda shocked. I'm proud of these guys."
For Johnson it's why he got into education. "When I come to work, I just come to work to help the students. and I enjoy it. I have a passion for it and I love every minute of it.
Which is why we presented him with a Newschannel 3 People Taking Action award and a $100 Visa gift card from our community partner Southern Bank.