Editor’s note: Every Monday, the Muscatine Journal profiles a local figure who responds to questions provided by one of our reporters.
A prolific writer, a dedicated teacher, a wrestling coach, mock trial team coach, Rachel’s Challenge coordinator, a husband and a father, Mike Fladlien (aka “Flad”) wants to leave his mark on the world.
Flad laments only having a bachelor’s degree, but he goes toe-to-toe with people with Ph.D.s when writing plans for the Council for Economics Education.
For a while, wrestling was Flad’s life, but an injury in college caused him to focus more on his education and his desire to teach—and that passion has benefitted thousands of people in Muscatine through the years.
Education: University of Northern Iowa, Bachelor of Arts in Business Education, 1979.
Professional background: High school teacher in Muscatine since 1979. Currently teaches law, economics, computer applications, record keeping, and logistics
Family: Kathy Fladlien (wife), Jason Fladlien, 28 (son), two step-daughters; Alex Weaver, 24 and Tess Weaver, 22
When did you move to Muscatine? What brought you here?
In 1979 I moved here. I got my first teaching job in Muscatine after graduating from UNI. My mom read about the opening in the paper and made me apply. I liked the place, stayed and met my gorgeous wife.
What’s your favorite thing to do in Muscatine?
My favorite thing is to go the Y and workout. I also like to see the plays at the high school and now and then I get to go to the symphony. My wife an I like to attend anything having to do with the arts.
You are an outgoing person. What are you passionate about and why?
Equal rights for everybody. I think that’s what I’m most passionate about right now.
I am also passionate about learning. I think that learning is the only thing that will save America. I believe that we should, as teachers, develop as much as we can in human capacity and help our students as much as we can because it’s their way into the future.
What are some life goals you have for yourself?
I’ve always wanted to write a book and I will continue to work on that. I wrote a coloring book for economics and I wrote a workbook for AP economics (self-published, available online), but my real goal is to write something significant. I think there is a thing with age, that you really want to do something that makes a difference in the lives of people.
I am currently working on a book adaptation of David Gould’s,“Two Sides of the Moon.” It’s a deep introspection on what two different cultures believe.