The four pillars of learning, service, faith, and leadership that made an impact during his years at Wartburg continue to intertwine in Randon Ruggles’ life. After graduating from Wartburg, Ruggles made his love of learning his career, teaching high school English at the FAIR School in downtown Minneapolis. He earned a 2010 TIES Exceptional Teacher Award for his use of educational technology, and the teaching blog he created as a Wartburg student and continued in his teaching career was recognized as a Best Teaching Resource in 2012.
He continued his own education by earning a master’s degree in instructional technology from the University of Northern Iowa, where one of his instructors said: “Randon is a 21st-century leader. He is a lifelong learner who is continually synthesizing ideas to create new opportunities for learners.”
Ruggles’ leadership skills flourished as the technology director at the FAIR School, where he consulted with instructors and students on effective course design and educational IT methods. “I have witnessed numerous occasions in which Randon offered his time and expertise in evening events way beyond his work expectations,” a school technology colleague observed. “He has a strong desire to be supportive and present in the lives and experiences of his students and their families.”
In 2013, he shifted course and became an education services engineer at Jamf, a software company where he was instrumental in the complete redesign of a comprehensive technical curriculum. He has continued his professional growth at Jamf with multiple certifications and leadership promotions, including advancement in 2016 to manager of curriculum and content development. Ever a teacher, he now trains and manages a team. “On the job, Randon exhibits a peaceful confidence that sends the impression he will do what he believes to be right, regardless of the outcome,” says Dean Hager, Jamf CEO. “Randon arrives every day at work ready to serve.”
Giving back has been a pillar in Ruggles’ life since his days as a student. He has volunteered many hours as the event chair for the Burnsville Relay for Life and is active with the Minnesota Ovarian Cancer Alliance Walk, ZERO Prostate Walk, and Feed My Starving Children, which he helped bring to campus while he was a student at Wartburg.
He shares his passion of service and faith as a small-group leader at Hosanna! Church. He also serves in small ways that often go unnoticed, from helping prepare classrooms at the office to assisting neighbors in need. “His most important leadership role is that of husband and father,” writes his wife, Emily, who nominated him. “The way in which he leads our family is beautiful.”