A colleague described Ron Nocks as a “tireless worker who has always given a hundred percent to his volunteer leadership and encourages others to give the same.”
A former state director, regional director, trustee, assistant international director, and international director of the Thespian Society, Mr. Nocks served on several EdTA/ITS committees and is credited with being a strong influence on the direction of the organization. “He was one of the first directors to challenge the board to think globally and to advocate theatre certification,” wrote a fellow EdTA leader.
While he taught at Westerville (Ohio) South High School he took productions to six consecutive Thespian Festivals. A former student recalled that Mr. Nocks did “very ambitious projects, but he always made sure that he had the ammunition and the horses to pull them off.” As a teacher, one of his great delights was teaching in the same community long enough to be able to teach the children of his former students, who came knowing that he expected the best of each and every one of them.
Mr. Nocks did not originally plan to be a teacher. He studied teaching while aspiring to a career in the professional theatre. “That is, until I walked into a classroom and taught a class,” he said. “It was like a revelation.” After glimpsing the impact he could have as a teacher, he never thought about professional theatre again. Retired for two years at the time of his Hall of Fame induction, Mr. Nocks looked back at his career. “Over the course of thirty-five years, I can’t tell you how many lives I’ve touched in a positive way, and so many have come back over the years to say thank you.”
Mr. Nocks sings professionally, and was a touring director and actor with Grandparents Living Theatre in Columbus after he was nominally retired. A colleague noted that he never really gave up teaching: “He is well on his way to helping create a positive image about how we can all grow older with thankfulness, grace, and awe at the richness of life.”