Tuesday, October 3, 2023

Wendy Moritz uses talents to help others

Wendy (Jackson) Moritz grew up on a 60-acre hobby farm between the small communities of Pease and Long Siding, Minn. They raised cows, sheep and rabbits. Wendy and her brother would help at her father’s printing business in Princeton.

She attended school at Princeton, and was active in volleyball, basketball, track, and choir. She played the flute and piccolo and was also involved with the marching and concert bands. The family took a trip to Florida in a customized school bus to visit relatives and Disney, plus they took a family trip to Acapulco, Mexico.

She then attended Bethel University in St. Paul majoring in Spanish Education, and she played two years of volleyball. She later coached the school’s men’s volleyball team, JV volleyball team at Fridley and YMCA volleyball programs while in college. She also studied for a semester in Granada, Spain while in school.

When she was looking for a teaching position, she really considered trying to find a teaching position in the Twin Cities. She was invited for an interview at Sauk Centre, Minn., for a possible part time Spanish teacher. When she was driving for the interview, she wondered “why am I doing this anyway as I really need a full-time position.” It turned out the full time Spanish teacher, and coach had just resigned, and they offered her the position that day. She told them she would think it over, and when she came home to tell her parents, she was excited for the opportunity. Perhaps God really had something else in mind for her. It turned out that the school had called Bethel to inquire about possible candidates, so they knew a lot about her already before she even met with them that day.

Jason Moritz grew up in Sauk Centre, with his brother, and was involved with football, wrestling, and baseball at school. He then went on to Winona State University and then South Dakota State University where he majored in Fish and Wildlife Management and played baseball at both schools. He was home for the summer working some construction positions before entering the Navy.

Wendy moved to Sauk Centre, but did not know anyone in the town, and she was one of two new teachers. When the local newspapers featured a story about the new staff members, Jason saw this.

While attending the local high school football game, they saw each other, started a conversation, and then started dating. They were married in May 1999. Wendy did become the Sauk Centre head volleyball coach, and the team qualified for the state volleyball tournament a couple of times. She also took a group of students from the school to Spain, as well as a group of students to host families in France through Rotary.

She always held a side job for several years, working at Red Lobster, as well as local golf clubs and restaurants. She really enjoyed the hustle and bustle while working, providing joy in customer service and meeting people in the restaurant business.

While Jason was stationed in Florida, Wendy was able to take a leave of absence from school, and she joined him in Mayport, Fla. He would be on deployment for up to six months at a time, serving on two international tours. Wendy earned her master’s degree at the University of Northern Florida in Secondary Education with an unofficial emphasis in Multilingual Learners.

She worked at a restaurant, again, Harry’s Seafood Bar and Grill, enjoying the tourism. Wendy was able to join Jason in Europe for a short time when he was on his travels there. They enjoyed time together in Germany, at the Kiel Fest.

When Jason got out of the service, Wendy took a position at Alexandria, Minn. school for a couple of years, where she was a Spanish teacher, and she was also the head volleyball coach during that time. Jason and Wendy did a lot of ice fishing on the local lakes while they were there. They would make a pot of chili and bring it out to the ice shack and cook it there while fishing. They began thinking about building a house on a lake.

In 2004, they took a leap of faith when Jason joined the Rochester Fire Department and moved to Rochester. Was God opening some new doors for them once again? Wendy worked at the Rochester Red Lobster at first. She then took the Spanish position at Byron School. This was an exciting time where the program grew, and they were able to offer college credit for high level Spanish classes.

This was also when the new Byron High School was built! During this time, they looked at different communities to live, and they ended up moving to Kasson in 2007. Wendy also took classes with the University of Minnesota Education Specialist program to earn her principal license.

Wendy then started with the Rochester Public Schools as a K-12 administrator educator at Bamber Valley, principal positions at Folwell Schools for seven years, and now two years as principal at Harriet Bishop. She just finished two years with the Minnesota Principals Academy at the University of Minnesota and is planning to work toward her superintendent license in the near future.

Their daughter, Gabby, is a freshman at K-M and participates in volleyball, golf, band and likes to sing for special music at St. John’s Lutheran church services at times. Cooper is in seventh grade and plays football, baseball, and really enjoys fishing. Jason and Wendy enjoy their children’s sports games and supporting the teams. Being in the Rochester Fire Department, Jason will be on duty and stay at the station during 24 hour periods, but it has worked for their family with their schedules.

The family enjoys taking day trips to various places throughout Minnesota and other adventures when visiting places like Chicago, going to museums, and perhaps taking in a ballgame. They are content to take advantage of day trips when possible.

The family went fishing at Lake Kabetogama, in Northern Minnesota, and were catching trophy size fish. They will go fishing on the Mississippi River, and then will catch a different kind of species or they will try lakes in the Alexandria and Frazee areas.

The family will take advantage of playing outdoor lawn games, and they are all involved with weightlifting to keep themselves in good physical condition. They have some land property in the Clarissa, Minn. area, and may expand this nature project in the future. Wendy is a member of the K-M volleyball association board, and she has also been a member of various committees at church.

They have an area in their backyard with native prairie grasses and wildflowers which makes a great pollinator location for bees and other wildlife. Each year they will burn it off to let the grasses and flowers flourish. Wendy enjoys walking through this area as it is relaxing and gives her a calming effect after a busy day, listening to the birds among the native plants. She has a gift for finding the extraordinary in the ordinary!

When she was growing up, her grandmother inspired her interest in flowers, and she had this as a 4-H project. She continues to work with flowers and landscaping at their Kasson home. She loves to watch things grow, whether it is flowers or their children or students and staff at school. The deer also help themselves to their hostas and other flowers in their backyard area from time to time.

Wendy continues to look at what plans God may have in store for her in the future, whether it will be for herself, her family, and friends. Faith is very important to her, and it helps her to continue to stay focused and balanced in her life. Wendy really has a passion to serve others and use the talents that God has given her with joy. Living in our community has given many opportunities for their family, and they have gained many friends through the years.



Dodge County Independent

Dodge County Independent
Dodge County ADvantage
301 S. Mantorville Ave.
Plaza 57 • Suite 200
Kasson, MN 55944

Dodge County Printing
301 S. Mantorville Ave.
Plaza 57 • Suite 200
Kasson, MN 55944

Monday-Thursday 10a.m.-3p.m.