FROM ALL-Ohio football player to rising star in the world of academia.
Zac Shutler has excelled, be it as an athlete, student, teacher or school administrator.
Shutler was a first-team all-state defensive end for St. John Central. He also excelled in baseball for the Fighting Irish, where he picked up his diploma in 1998.
Shutler's shoulder pads and baseball glove have been transformed into a shirt, tie and school policy manual. The 32-year-old is a shining light in the Ohio County Schools' administrative ladder.
Shutler recently received another promotion. The Ohio County Board of Education this spring appointed the Mount Union graduate as principal at both the Bethlehem and West Liberty school buildings.
"It is a fantastic opportunity. Ohio County Schools have trusted me to create opportunities for their children to excel," Shutler said. "I am looking forward to meeting the staffs and preparing for the school year. Michelle Snyder had done a great job at the schools for the last 10 years, and I hope to continue to build on what she has established."
If overseeing two schools wasn't enough on Shutler's plate, he is also undertaking another additional and ambitious task. He has been employed by West Liberty University to teach foundations of education on Wednesday nights in the fall.
"It is another opportunity to grow and learn more about the field of education," he said. "It's also a chance to share some of what I learned during my short career."
Shutler's latest principal assignments come on the heels of his serving as assistant principal in 2011. Prior to that, Shutler was the assistant principal at Triadelphia Middle School.
He cut his teaching teeth at River High from 2003-06, where he was the head coach of the junior high football team, while also helping with the varsity squad. He then matriculated to Warwood, teaching social studies for one year before landing at Triadelphia to launch his career in administration.
"Ohio County Schools is a very efficient and well-run school system. It has strong leadership from the top down and works to create new leaders to fill voids that are created through retirements," Shutler noted. "Mr. (George) Krelis and Dr. (Dianna) Vargo seek out ideas that keep our school system at the forefront. There is always the thought process of what is best for our students when decisions are made."
Shutler traces much of his success back to hits roots, that being his family.
"I have been fortunate to have fantastic role models in my life, beginning with my mom and dad. I truly learned the meaning of work ethic from my dad at the grocery store," Shutler said. "Having two competitive brothers, dad taught us to work together as a team. I know that has benefitted all of us in our personal and professional lives.
"I have learned from fantastic educators throughout my career and have tried portions of what they have been successful with and incorporate into my decisions," he added.
Shutler earned his degree in history from Mount Union in 2002, minoring in adolescent education. He earned his master's degree from Franciscan University in academic administration. he has principal's and superintendent's licenses.
And what lies down the academic employment road?
"I am focused on the task at hand which is moving into my first principal position. I would like to establish myself and see what the future hold," Shutler said. "My wife, Kara, is extremely supportive of my career, so we will see where it leads. Right now, my priorities are being a solid husband and father."
Zac is married to the former Kara Schunn. She was a 2000 SJC grad, where she was a Lady Irish hoop standout, helping the Green to a 19-1 record as a senior and an OVAC title. They reside in Colerain with their two children: Luke (22 months) and Leah (2 months).
Kapral may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org