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JOE SCHMIT RETURNS TO SEYMOUR Several year ago Kurt Boettcher, an active member of the Seymour Community Historical Society Board of Directors, had the idea to contact Joe and see if he would speak at the annual meeting of the historical society. Kurt was a high school classmate of Joe and they became good friends, even rooming together for two years while attending UW-La Crosse. In recent years Joe has become a nationally known motivational speaker. Instead of speaking at the annual meeting, Joe suggested making his presentation a fund raiser for the museum.

Joe was the Sports Director for WBAY-TV in Green Bay, Wisconsin, before moving to the Twin Cities in 1985. He got his start as a weekend sports anchor for KCRG-TV in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and WKBT-TV in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Joe attended the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse with a degree in Mass Communications. He graduated from Seymour High School in 1975 and received the Lions Club Scholar/Athlete Award. He was active in sports, earning nine letters and was the class graduation speaker.

Eventually, Joe found an opening in his busy schedule and suggested Thursday evening, September 22nd. Since the meeting room of the museum has limited seating it was decided to utilize the high school auditorium. The school administration was very cooperative and the auditorium provided comfortable seating for the 150 people who attended. Tickets were sold for $10.00 each and with an additional contribution from his book sales, Joe donated close to $2,000.00 to the museum sustainability fund in memory of his parents Elmer and Dorothy Schmit.

Overall it was a delightful evening with the historical society hosting a reception at the museum following Joe's 90 minute presentation. It was great to see many of his classmates attending along with a variety of people from all walks of life. Recalling his Seymour roots, Joe appeared wearing his high school letter jacket and included self-deprecating stories from his high school athletic experience. Mixing in appropriate humor with motivational principles and poignant stories, Joe's dynamic message included something for everyone. A number of key points from the presentation are listed below.

• We make our biggest impressions when we are not trying to be impressive.
• As we interact with people we make a silent impact.
• Determine your Mount Rushmore of influence. List four people who helped you become the person you are.
• As you go through life, remember your actions influence others and their Mount Rushmore.
• Research indicates that influential people have three characteristics: Purpose, Persistence and Passion.
• Successful people care about others and act accordingly.
• Listen more than you talk and be less judgmental.
• Align your actions with your values.
• Associate with positive people. Follow the 90-10 principle. Negative people will drag you down.
• A nice comment or compliment can make someone's day.
• Happiness is a choice, it's contagious, help spread it.
• The person who is better prepared and willing to work smart will be most successful.

The day after his speech Joe and his wife Laura toured the museum. Both were impressed with the facility and were pleased to help with its sustainability. Thanks much Joe! You certainly made an impact on your return to Seymour.

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