Let me start with an interesting fact. Did you know that if you put
a frog in a pot of cold water and put it on the stove, the temperature
of the water increases slowly enough so that the frog never even knows
he is being boiled? Now before Steve pummels me for speaking negatively
about a frog, let me explain what I mean.
Anyone who knows Steve Grande knows about his unusual preoccupation
with this amphibian. Confused Freshman coming to JMU for the first
time are confronted by FROG's - or freshman orientation guides. I am
not certain why Steve enjoys this green, slimy, and ribbitting creature
but the boiling frog is a terrific analogy for Steve's effect on people
here at James Madison University.
Steve, like the imperceptibly increasing temperature of water coming to boil,
overtime affects people without them even knowing it. His disarmingly modest
manner allows him to get inside of you before you even realize what he has helped
you become. Luckily, the end result is not that you've been boiled. Just changed
So what's his purpose?
Why does he do what he does? According to Steve, he strives on a
daily basis to create the magic that will allow people
to live authentically
by helping them discover who they truly are. To describe just how profoundly
terrific Steve is, let's continue with our frog theme and spell out the word "frog" as
we honor Steve Grande here today.
for FORGETS HIMSELF
for REACHES OUT
Steve strives to go out and meet the community in any possible way that he can.
The connections he makes with students, faculty, and staff drive his desire to
make a difference. His quiet, leadership abilities have had a profound effect
in many of the people that are sitting here today.
This sense of togetherness makes Steve realize that this is the place for him.
From the sparkling glare in his eyes and passionate intonation in his voice,
I could tell from my interview with Steve that he genuinely wants to improve
the quality of student's lives, not only as students but also as human beings.
When asked what
drives him to do what he does everyday he responds with a feeling
of obligation. He states, "It is my responsibility to help people and if
that is not achieved, then I have failed. What I have realized is that is not
just about thinking, it's about taking action that makes the difference".
The JMU community thanks Steve Grande.