"At the [July 20 Crosby-Huffman Chamber of Commerce] luncheon, one of the things that I will be discussing is leadership, because that's what I teach at Stephen F. Austin State University," Trautman said. "I'm the assistant professor in the ad leadership department and I prepare teachers who want to be principals."
Ethical leadership will be her subject. This is Trautman's favorite leadership theory. "It's pretty easy to remember," she said. "There are three A's: Accountability, Accessibility, and Authenticity. I think those are three really important characteristics for any good leader."
She has been hands on education for 20 years and was greatly influenced by both of her parents. Her father, a World War II veteran and retired chemical worker at Ethyl Corp., taught her to respect his core values: hard work, honesty, and integrity. Her mother placed a high value on education and educators, and the importance of the role both play in American society. Her mother's dream was for her daughter to become a teacher.
"I don't think there is a better feeling when you see that light go on in children's faces when they learn something new. For myself, I'm a perpetual learner, I'll be learning till the day I die," she said.
Referring to the transition from being a principal to becoming a candidate, she said, "The job of a politician and the Legislature is very much like a principal. The first thing you have to do is be a leader. I led a staff of 110 and a school of 1,400 students. You have to have people who want to follow you just like a campaign."