Hometown: I consider Marshalltown home, having lived here most of the time since 1981. We returned for good six years ago after living in Wichita, Kan.
Family: My wife, Laurie, and I have three children: daughter Merrill “MG” 11, sons Davison “D-Dub” 10, and Cooper “Coop” 8.5. All three work at Morning Glory Bakery – the family business – in some capacity. My mom is Phyliss Troutner and is the bakery’s bookkeeper.
Pets: We acquired two kittens this past year: Grey and Charlie.
Hobbies and interests: I like/live to play volleyball and I also swim. I am fluent in Spanish – which comes in handy at school and the bakery. I also collect coins, play cards and am addicted to travel. I have traveled to (or through) most of the United States. I’ve been to Canada, Mexico (lived there three months), China and all over Europe. I take students on a European trip every other year.
Occupation: 8th grade math teacher at Miller Middle School and bakery co-owner.
What that means: “Teacher” Dave teaches math to 13- and 14-year olds, but really tries to help them transition from being boys and girls to being young men and women, not to mention dealing with all the hormonal awkwardness that ensues. I try to teach them more on “how to learn” than just teaching math. “Business co-owner” Dave helps make the behind-the-scenes decisions. You will not see this Dave anywhere down in the kitchen unless asking Laurie a question.
Tenure: This is my first year at Miller Middle School – but I have taught middle school and high school math and/or Spanish 14 years.
Best part of job: I knew from age seven I wanted to teach. On a daily basis I get to interact with 100 young bodies, minds and souls. It’s a huge responsibility and a tremendous honor. I love my job at Miller – the students and staff are amazing. The best part about owning a small business is the regular customers. Seeing them come in makes my heart happy. Some have supported us since we were a home-based business.
Books: I am currently reading “Marbles – Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me” by Ellen Forney.
Movies: “Dead Poets Society” and “Good Will Hunting.”
Foods: I’m partial to the bakery’s cinnamon rolls.
Sports: Any team my kids happen to be on at the moment.
Best part of living here: Marshalltown is not the small town it used to be; it’s better. It still offers all what an Iowa town has to offer, yet is diverse enough to represent the world to our community.
Most influential person: I’d have to say Laurie. She’s my best friend, my sounding board and the main reason I am who I am today. A tie for second are my three children. They are quick to forgive their old man’s flaws and mistakes. They constantly help me reevaluate my life and priorities.
Local involvement: Although a believer in Jesus, I’m not much into church at this point in my life. Member, Franklin PTSA.
Advice: Be yourself. Make decisions on what’s best for you and your happiness; not based on what others think.
15 Minutes is a Saturday feature about central Iowans. The question and answer format lends itself be completed or read in 15 minutes or less. To submit a name for consideration, or to participate, contact Times-Republican Staff and Features Reporter Mike Donahey at 641-753-6611 or firstname.lastname@example.org