Mr. Leon Douglas sits at his desk in Ms. Odetta Smith's office in the H-wing.

Mr. Leon Douglas sits at his desk in Ms. Odetta Smith’s office in the H-wing.

New secretary Mr. Leon Douglas is no stranger to the St. Louis area. Though he lived in California for a short time, he graduated from Hazelwood East High School.

“I transferred from the U-City area right before high school,” he said, “so I know what it’s like to be new. I think that has helped prepare me for this new role in the school.”

Douglas has prepared for his new job at secretary to assistant principal Ms. Odetta Smith in more ways than one. Not only was he in a similar administrative role at an insurance company, but he was an academic coach at Jennings High School.

He said he liked the position at Jennings because “it allowed me to experience high school from a different point of view, and made me responsible in a whole new way to students.”

Douglas likes this responsibility, and intends to use it to help students in any way possible.

“I love to help people, and be able to interact with students every day, so if I have an opportunity to help a student, I will.”

Not everything about his job is easy. There are some hard parts to it.

“When students are not living up to their potential … and not investing their time and energy in the right way,” Douglas said. “To see them not helping themselves and creating a good future for themselves is difficult.”

But Douglas is here to help.

“I want students to know that I am approachable and I can help them,” he said. “My goal is to help people and build relationships. I know for me, staff members affected me in school, so if I could say or do something that helps a student in the longterm, I’d like that.”


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