2007 Reasons to Believe Alumni Honor Roll

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Role models who give us Reasons to Believe in the power of education

Jaime Sanchez

Jaime SanchezJ.C. Harmon High School, 1978

It was the support of his high school art teacher, Herman Gerber, that gave Jaime Sanchez reasons to believe in himself while growing up in the Kansas City, Kansas Public Schools. Without his guidance and encouragement, Sanchez believes he would not have the career he has today.

Drawing was a passion of Sanchez's from an early age. Equipped with a piece of notebook paper and a pencil, he would copy photographs and create art in his free time. He thought of it as a hobby, but Gerber saw it as much more.

"He made me realize that I could actually make a living out of something I always thought of as fun," Sanchez recalls.

Gerber's ongoing guidance helped Sanchez finesse his skills and build a portfolio. He supported him in applying for college scholarships. Most importantly, he helped Sanchez build the confidence he needed to succeed.

And succeed he did. This year Sanchez will celebrate his 25th anniversary with the Hallmark corporation. His current position is creative director in the Hallmark Creative Organization. Some of his duties involve reviewing incoming creative portfolios. Among his major accomplishments, he helped the company establish a digital design work process. He also serves as chair of Hallmark's Hispanic Education Awareness and Resource Team, which focuses on hiring and developing Hispanics.

Growing up in the KCK Public schools, Sanchez said his greatest challenge was not being negatively influenced by peer pressure. The strength and support of his family and close friends kept him grounded.

Today, Sanchez makes frequent visits to high schools and colleges, talking to students about setting goals and planning for their futures.

"They need to take advantage of every educational opportunity afforded them. The effort they make now will make a difference in their own careers," he said.