Ted Powers, who taught journalists at Moraine Valley, dies – Chicago Tribune newstrendslive

Ted Powers, whose passion for journalism inspired budding reporters at Moraine Valley Community College and turned The Glacier into one of the top student newspapers in the country, died Feb. 19 at age 68 after a lengthy battle with congestive heart failure.

“Ted gave everything in his life 150%,” said his wife, Alison Moran-Powers. “Whether it was his family, the Moraine Valley Glacier or when he was reporting on events. That, and his passion and zest for life, were the keys to his success. Another thing that made Ted unique: like the greats he covered, he made those around him better. Ted always showed up for the people he loved.”

Ted Powers

They met when she was a guest lecturer to his publications class at Moraine Valley in 2012.

As a student at Moraine Valley, Powers covered sports and news for The Glacier newspaper, and freelanced as a high school sports reporter for the Chicago Sun-Times and Southwest News Publishing.

Upon graduation from St. Xavier, he was asked to return to Moraine Valley, first as director of advertising, later as student publication adviser for The Glacier, until his retirement in 2019.

Under his direction, The Glacier became one of the top-rated student newspapers in the country, earning honors from the Illinois Community College Journalism Association and from the College Media Association and Associated Collegiate Press.

He took his students to college journalism conferences across the nation, from California to Washington, D.C.

He and Alison also hosted workshops on the future of journalism and blogging for students and advisers.

Powers also created opportunities for his students to cover teams such as the Chicago Wolves, giving them the opportunity to work alongside professional sports journalists.

He also hosted college and high school journalism conferences at Moraine Valley, inspiring a new generation of journalists by bringing in veterans of the field to guest lecture. He also coached Moraine Valley’s College Bowl to several tournament championships.

One of those students was Kevin Kenealy, who is now an AP English teacher at Crete-Monee High School, a published author and an Orland Park resident.

“I don’t know where I’d be in my life without Ted Powers,” Kenealy said. “He not only positively affected my life, but the lives of many. Whenever I teach a class, help a student or pass on one of his words of wisdom, I know I will do his memory justice. He continues to serve even after he’s gone because he showed us the way, and that’s truly a beautiful thing.”

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Powers grew up in Chicago’s Ashburn neighborhood and graduated from Bogan High School. He studied at Moraine Valley Community College and St. Xavier University.

As a teenager, he earned the rank of Eagle Scout and was named a member of the Order of the Arrow, which recognizes Boy Scouts who best exemplify the Scout Oath and Law in their daily lives. He carried that determination into his first career as a printer, as a husband, and in raising his children. Powers was involved in the Masons, Y-Indian Princesses, coaching softball and baseball, and mentoring students.

He was diagnosed with Stage 4 kidney cancer in 1992. He researched and underwent an experimental treatment at Rush Hospital, which ultimately gave him an additional 30+ years; time enough to earn his associate degree in communications from Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, then a bachelor’s in communications from St. Xavier University in Chicago after his cancer went into remission.

As a lifelong Chicago sports fan, he relished covering the teams he loved as a boy. Whether it was the Chicago Cubs, Bears, Blackhawks and Bulls, and even the White Sox, he was thrilled to interview his heroes of the past and the stars of the present.

According to Powers’ wishes, there will be no funeral or burial services. A celebration of life was held in DeKalb.

Gifts in his memory can be sent to Camp Tecumseh-YMCA in Brookston, Indiana, his favorite camping location where he spent many weekends with his family.

Survivors include Alison; their child, Lev; his brother, Bud; sisters, Peggy and Judy; mother-in-law Betty Moore; former wife, Colleen Flood; daughters Felicia Fernandez, Selina (Hugo) Cabrera, Melita (Dan) Loya, Colleen Fernandez Thompson, Marialena Fernandez, Jenine Fernandez and Rebecca Powers (Corey Mainhart); sons Ricardo (Gina) Fernandez, Cristiano (Meg Ann) Fernandez and Andrew (Kathy) Powers; and 18 grandchildren.

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