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Meet the Advisory Board: Rod McLean

Rod McLean

Are you part of any Osher committees?

I have not served on any committees.

What is your most memorable Osher experience?

While listening to Dr. Adler’s “Future of American Democracy” class, I looked around the room, and marveled at the collective intelligence, energy, and curiosity of the group. It made me understand for the first time the power, and the attendant responsibility, of older citizens who stay educated and engaged.

Favorite Osher presentation you have attended thus far?

Although I am a fan of anything by David Adler and Ralph Bild, I was impressed with Shaun Nichols’ recent course, “Five Great American Economic Crises.” Unfortunately, this excellent class was rendered obsolete just days later when the first case of Covid-19 was confirmed in Idaho. I think we need to get Shaun back for a little update…

Are you a Boise native? If not, where are you originally from?

After living near Syracuse, NY since childhood, My wife, Darryl, and I retired and moved to Boise in 2014. Like many transplants, we moved here to be near our grandkids. Three of our four sons have settled in the Northwest, and our frequent visits to our Boise family made us realize that this would be a perfect place for our retirement adventure.

What is your career history?

I was fortunate to have split my 43-year career between two highly respected, century-old furniture companies. After working my way through most facets of the business, I was named President of the Harden Furniture Company in 1989. In 1995 I joined Stickley Furniture where I founded, and became President of, Stickley Fine Upholstery. My favorite aspects of the business included product design and development, marketing, operations, and organization building.

What hobbies do you enjoy?

My hobbies include hiking/walking, travel, reading, watercolor painting, cooking, woodworking, and helping my sons with their “projects”. After the stay-at-home order, I will also be returning to my volunteer shifts at St Lukes Pediatrics and the Idaho Suicide Prevention Hotline.

What are you doing to occupy your time during the stay-at-home order?

My stay-at-home activities include most of the previously mentioned. I’m also connecting more with friends and family, modifying our kitchen cabinets, and spending a bit too much time soaking up history in the making. I’ve particularly enjoyed 2 recent books: Nothing Like It in the World, Stephen Ambrose’s fascinating history of the Transcontinental Railway, and The Education of an Idealist by Samantha Power, Ambassador to the UN under President Obama.