Meet Tim & Faith Lightfoot
Tim and Faith's journey together began in 1992 in a very amusing and surprising way.
Tim was a young research scientist and faculty member at a university in Florida. Having an open afternoon on his calendar, Tim decided to play a round of golf with a few colleagues. Unfortunately, one of Tim's buddies canceled with minutes to spare before tee time. Knowing they were moments away from losing their tee time unless they found a fourth golfer, the guys decided to see if they could find someone, anyone, to join them. After running through the pro shop, into the snack bar, and out to the driving range, they spotted Faith.
Faith had been one of Tim's students. Tim remembered her not because she was a bit older than the other students, having gone back to college for a second degree. Instead, Tim remembered her because she was often very outspoken in his classes.
Even though she had graduated and moved on in life, remembering what she was like in class made Tim hesitant to ask Faith to join them. However, with their tee time at hand, they were desperate! Tim asked, and Faith said, "Yes!"
Faith joined the guys for two reasons. First, she never passed up the opportunity to golf.
Secondly, she thought, how bad could the afternoon turn out?
The answer to that question depends on whom you ask. Ask Tim, and he'll tell you that it was a day with irritations and some laughs. What was irritating? It turns out that Faith was a much better golfer than Tim, and she cleaned his clock.
As for Faith, she'll tell you that she laughed a lot, especially watching one of the guys lie on his belly to retrieve golf balls from a pond even though he knew the course had alligators roaming the greens. It wasn't Tim on his belly fishing for golf balls. Tim has more sense than that!
The afternoon of golf was entertaining, but more importantly, it was the day that started a lifetime of laughs, more golfing, and, eventually, marriage.
So, why the photo of Tim and Faith with dogs? Because through their year of dating, they discovered a shared love for dogs, racing cars, travel, and, yes, higher education.
They also discovered that Tim had the passion, desire, and personality suited for research, teaching, and the academic world. Click here to read Tim's CV.
On the other hand, Faith was born with the entrepreneurial DNA of her parents. Combining her education, entrepreneurial spirit, and passion for health, Faith created a business specializing in corporate and community programs to support the health goals of employees, families, women, and cancer patients. Click here to read
Fortunately, both had challenging careers that were fueled by their passions.
Due to their love for their careers, Faith and Tim wanted to help students discover their passion and direction in life. So, over the years, they hosted student get-togethers to connect and interact outside the university. What they observed was that there was a consistent thread in the conversations with students. Regardless of age or stage in their career, the students and young faculty shared their feelings of uncertainty, frustration, and confusion about how to enter into, navigate and thrive in academia. Additionally, they spoke about their added struggles with how to maintain a healthy work-life balance.
The get-togethers and interactions with students gave Tim and Faith great joy; however,
Tim and Faith's enjoyment and work-life balance in their careers weren't happening for the
young academics that crossed their paths.
The conversations with students, along with the desire to help young academics move forward in their careers, are what motivated Tim to create a professional development class for master's and doctoral students as well as write his first book,"Finding The Best Faculty Job For You: Living and Prospering in Academia."
Due to the success and feedback of the first book and class, Tim and Faith combined their entrepreneurial and academic backgrounds to open the doors to Academic Career Development Services in 2017. With Faith driving the corporate bus by overseeing the day-to-day operations and Tim supplying the "teaching" content for the books and
e-courses they continued to chat with young academics, which led Tim to write the second book,
In an effort to support the career development efforts of universities, research institutions, and professional organizations workshops, seminars, webinars, and e-courses are delivered via Zoom and in person.
When Tim and Faith aren't chatting with young academics about their hopes, dreams, and challenges, they travel, seek new challenges, work to keep the synapses connecting by learning to speak new languages, and split their time between Texas and New Mexico with a continued desire to embrace their work-life balance.