Degrees and Certifications:

Mr. Hady Ford

 Allow me to tell you a little bit about myself. I grew up in a little town called Lynn, West Virginia (Matewan is right next to it, and that is where I call home). I have not always had a dream to be an educator nor work with young people, but as I have made my journey through life, things changed. With those changes, my heart’s desire has become more and more to help lead the youth and help them get their lives going in the right direction at a young age.
     Growing up, I lived between a set of railroad tracks and an old dirty river, and I loved every minute of it. We didn’t have much money, so we didn’t depend on things to have a good time. We learned how to enjoy the simple things in life. Because of this, I learned at an early age that I was going to have to work hard for everything.  

     This also played a big role in how I played sports while I was growing up. I realized that there were players who were more talented than I was, but I always tried to push myself and never let anyone outwork me. I knew that I would not always able to beat their talent level, but I also knew that no one could stop me from putting in more effort than someone else. All of these things played a part in developing who I would become later in life.
     After high school, I went to college and planned on playing football and just wanted to see where things would go from there. I was pretty good at football and thought I had a shot a playing in the NFL; then, I got sick. I think it started when I was a senior in high school, but the symptoms didn’t start showing until I was in my first year in college. After a couple of years of college and my body completely deteriorating, I was finally diagnosed with Graves Disease; it is a form of hyperthyroidism.
     After that, I quit college because if football wasn’t involved I really didn’t see how it would be useful to me. Also, shortly after that, I became a Christian. With these two events in my life, everything that seemed to be important to me before was about to change. I started working in the coal industry, and like everything else, I felt that if I worked hard I could move up or get better jobs within a company, and I did. In a few years, I went from general laborer to equipment operator to mechanic to electrician. During this same time, about 10 years, I got married, adopted two kids, helped coach in midget league and worked with the kids at our church. This really got me wanting to do more for the kids in our area and wanting to help them have a chance at succeeding in life.
     After being laid off a few times from the railroad and mining and seeing the mining industry about to turn south, I decided to go back to school and get my Regents Bachelor’s degree. I figured, if anything, I could go into substitute teaching if I got laid off again. The very week I was finishing my bachelor’s degree, the automotive teaching position came open at Mingo Central high school, and after applying, I got the job. I went on to teach there for the next five years. During that time, I went on to get my master’s degree in Adult and technical education and became certified in Driver Education and P.E. and Health. After that, I was hired as the head football coach at Tug Valley High School, and that is where I am currently coaching and teaching P.E. and Health.  

     Throughout my life, I have learned many things. I became a certified Mechanic, Welder, Teacher, Electrician, Miner, and a heavy equipment operator. I’ve been a youth pastor, sang on a praise team, and learned how to play the piano and sing; TOGETHER (that was a tough one). 

     With all of this being said, I think that everything that I have been through will help me to be a better teacher. You see, I know what it’s like to start with nothing and have to work for everything in your life. I know how it feels when everything seems like it’s going against you and you don’t see a way out. I know what it’s like to face something that I have no idea how to do but I still got to face it. But by fighting through these obstacles, and many more, I feel like I have been given a great opportunity to be a light to other people and encourage them that they can overcome too.  This is why I love teaching and coaching.