15 Minutes


Resides: Marshalltown

Hometown: I was born in Waterloo. Our family moved to Marshalltown when I was three.


Family: My parents are Mike and Carole Tullis. My wife is Christine, and our children are Austin 14, and Brooke 11.

Pets: Brunner, a beagle, and Charlotte, a cat.

Hobbies and interests: Biking, competitive running, swimming, and participating in fitness classes at the Marshalltown YMCA-YWCA.


Occupation: Director of Equity and Learning Supports and Project Director for Marshalltown’s Safe Schools/Healthy Students grant project.

What that means: Through my work at the school district’s central office, I am part of an administrative team dedicated to making Marshalltown schools the “district of choice.” My work involves a good deal of collaboration throughout the school district, and, with a variety of community agencies, we work in partnership to remove learning barriers to help all students succeed.

Tenure: This is my 20th year in the Marshalltown Community School District. I have a background as an elementary teacher, primarily fifth and sixth grades.

Best part of job: The most rewarding part of my job is serving people. Life is full of challenges, and when I can make an impact by helping others, we all win. I view my work as a mission and try to portray a positive attitude and insert humor where appropriate.

If I could change jobs I would be: I would enjoy police work. I was an MP (military police) in the U.S. Army.


Book: The last book I read was “Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption,” by Laura Hillenbrand.

Movie: “The Wizard of Oz,” directed by Victor Fleming.

Food: The pizza at Zeno’s Restaurant.

Sports: The Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League and Iowa Hawkeyes.


Best part of living here: Marshalltown will always be home. The town is an ideal size, and we have the most beautiful Y in the Midwest. Residents are friendly.

Local involvement: Marshalltown’s First Presbyterian Church: Elder, praise band drummer and Sunday school teacher.

Heart of Iowa Big Brothers/Big Sisters: Board president.

Sister Cities Association of Marshalltown: Board member and Director of Student Exchanges.

ISU Extension 4-H Youth Development: Chairman

Y: Partner With Youth Campaign

Linn Creek Arts Festival: Logistics

Most influential people: My grandfather, the late John Gibbons, who suffered many hardships in his lifetime. He spent his early years in an orphanage, endured the Great Depression, and worked in a meat packing plant. He quietly set a strong example of being honorable.

Advice on life: From my father: “It pays to serve Jesus.”

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 mdonahey@timesrepublican.com