About John F. Yeaman

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John F. Yeaman is Texas born, father of a grown son and daughter who are jewels, a retired pastor and social worker in Austin, Texas, whose wife after almost fifty years of loving interaction was kidnapped by Alzheimer and died July 23, 2013.

Reared in a dysfunctional family I had an alcoholic father and co-dependent mother. I was a loner until between my sophomore and junior years I went with a friend to a youth caravan at the local Methodist Church, and became one of a group of boys trying many scientific adventures.

Dad started the Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) program the month I graduated from high school. We talked about AA many times; echoes are across this web site. To make up for earlier years, he took my best buddy and me to Austin, where we climbed the rickety iron steps to the top of the capitol dome and swam in Barton Springs. He organized raft trips for dozens of us on the Rio Grande near Laredo when it was a grand river. Because they divorced while I was in college, I know those schizy feelings. Dad married wonderful Lucie a year later.

I graduated from Southwestern University in Georgetown, Texas, and from Perkins School of Theology at Southern Methodist in Dallas with an MDiv with challenging, excellent teachers, while my bride taught for two years, and was told she earned a PhT (putting hubby thru).

As rural Texans say, I "pastored" Methodist Churches across southwest Texas. Churches in Bertram and Fredericksburg taught me much. Churches in Austin and San Antonio enriched me personally as I strengthened them. I listened and learned and grew, and worked with individuals and couples on experiences from abortion to youth.

In the ways of the 50's I was the breadwinner and did little parenting. Before our second child I realized we both must parent and care for the home for our well being and our children's.

For several reasons I took 20-year retirement as a pastor to earn a Master of Science in Social Work at the University of Texas in Austin during the tumultuous early 70's with profs who were insightful and demanding.

While most social workers become psychotherapists, some of us train to change the causes of problems by interventions in organizations, improve systems, and plan, evaluate and work to make services more effective. I worked with Model Cities programs, poverty war programs, child care, and other social work mostly in Houston and Austin where I was a manager of multi-million dollar poverty programs. Meanwhile, computers became increasingly useful tools to work toward quality and accountability, and I became part of an end-user community.

As a volunteer I worked at the Austin Rape Crisis Center for several years and was appointed by the Austin City Council for two terms on the Community Development Commission where we sought people's needs and desires before recommending annually to the City Council how to spend millions of Community Development federal funds and we worked with the City staff and Council.

After retiring as a social worker (with an early retirement bonus at age 66), the importance of parenting and ways to parent intrigued me, and after training and qualifying in the Systematic Training for Effective Parenting (STEP) program, I led many groups to improve parenting skills.

All of my adult life I have been very healthy, and at 80 I joined friends to climb Enchanted Rock – a several hundred foot tall hunk of granite near Fredericksburg. It was exhilarating. Since then my health has been descending from those heights; I am happy with my health and myself.

I enjoy seminars in third-age education and in UT SAGE and have taught several. I love to explore, socialize, and bicycle. Near Valentine's Day 2005 I traded for a hybrid Prius sedan.

On this web site I first want to share many exciting, creative experiences that parents shared in the groups I led along with what I taught. Also on this site I want to share:

  • my concerns about current issues,
  • my understanding of Christian faith as my beliefs changed as a result of working with so many people as a social worker, and
  • materials from my leading third-age seminars.

So, explore the several, varied subjects on this site, and if you want, share your comments with me.

Copyright © 2002 John F. Yeaman

 

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The several of us who were managers worked closely with a team of financial auditors and a team of program quality evaluators who checked the providers of services regularly — usually each year. We worked with community providers with histories in their communities for delivering quality services to people who needed them, and we worked with United Funds, Model Cities, and other local funders. The Federal program provided $3 for every dollar of local funds (9:1 for family planning) to provide services to many more people. Most community service providers worked very hard with us to improve quality of services and reduce their cost. We worked with "faith-based" groups, which had to adhere to the same high standards of services delivered, non-discrimination, and fiscal efficiency. Looking back as the song says, "Those were the days!"