Get to Know Me: Jerry LaBuy

Posted on Mar 27, 2017

Welcome to our “Get to Know Me” feature for RVC employees! Today we are going to get to know Jerry LaBuy.

Title: Assistant Professor and Co-Chair


Department: Speech and Mass Communication


Tell us a little about your job at RVC.

I’m an RVC alum (class of ’96) and I have worked in the Mass Com department since 2007. I became the department chair in 2014.


What inspires you?

Kindness. The selfless acts of being observant, considerate, and kind in life mean the most to me. Even when you may have to go out of your way to make sure things are good for those around you, you should. That effort is important and never wasted.


What do you like to do for fun?

Trips with my family are the most fun. We do the normal week long big trips each year, but even the day trips are great. We love to take quick trips to WI, especially in the summer.


What was your very first job?

My first job was mowing my Grandma Josephine’s 1/4 acre yard for the payment of a bologna sandwich, Kool-Aid, a $10 bill, and all the cookies I could eat. That was a pretty good rate.


Who are your role models?

Carl Sagan is a big one in my life. I admired his intelligence, but also his humor and tremendous imagination too. It’s something I hope I emulate as an instructor and leader in my own life.


If you are a part of any local or national clubs or boards, please share those details.

The one I’m most involved with is the Mosaic World Film Festival. It’s a 3-day international film fest held every August at the Nordlof Center in downtown Rockford. We are celebrating our 10th anniversary this year, I’ve been involved since I became the director of the fest in 2010.


Where is your favorite place to go at RVC?

Mass Com. It’s a lab and workshop for those that want to try and make something. I love it there. It really becomes a home on campus for our students which is the goal.


What is your favorite quote or words to live by?

“Wherever you go, there you are.” – Buckaroo Banzai


What is the best advice you have ever received?

Humility. I didn’t receive this advice verbally, but rather by watching my Father interact with others on a daily basis. I was attentive and picked up on that very quickly. I feel it’s extremely important for a truly happy life.


What’s the last good book you’ve read?

I just finished ‘Good, Clean, Fun’ by Nick Offerman.


What’s the last good movie you have seen?

The LEGO Batman Movie. Hi-Larious.


What is your favorite TV show to binge watch?

Parks and Recreation


Who is your favorite musician, group or band?

Anything ambient or Dreamwave such as: Brian Eno, M83, Tangerine Dream, or Tycho.


What is your favorite thing to eat?

Cheeseburgers and Sushi (Not together.)


Where do you like to go or what do you like to do when you have a long weekend?

In the summer it would be a trip to Lake Geneva or the Dells, the UP of Michigan, or our favorite – the Boundary Waters in Minnesota. In the Winter we usually stay warm and toasty at home. We have the deluxe cable package.


What might surprise people to learn about you?

I once made a commercial with a talking block of cheddar cheese. When the production was over, we ate him.


Finish this sentence: “There is no limit to…”

how important listening can be to others.” Being an educator has really brought that one into focus for me. So many students have no one to really talk with about what they want to do or where they hope their education can take them. Sometimes it’s just about a struggle that is going on in their life. I try and remind my students all the time that they can ask me anything they want. Or share jokes. I love it when they share a joke with me, no matter how bad it is. (Mine can be pretty bad.)


What has been your biggest personal challenge?

Being kinda poor as a kid was tough, but it makes you resourceful and imaginative I think. My parents are great and worked hard for what little we did have. I respect that so much.


What’s the next big thing coming up in your life that you are looking forward to?

I’m in pre-production on a feature film through my independent production company. We hope to film this July/August.

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