Leading by Example


Dr. DeBow Freed and his wife, Catherine (Kitty) Freed, could easily be considered “absolutely incredible citizens.” Their association with private, church-related higher education has confirmed their goal of instilling direction while helping young people provide service to others. Dr. DeBow and his wife, together, teach Sunday school, head a commission to develop a progressive curriculum for transient populations, and teach adult biblical study groups. Dr. DeBow said that he views public service as his calling.

“The Freeds are a national treasure and we are indeed blessed to have had their service to our community,” said Charles and Mariann Younger, co-chairs of the 2014 On Behalf of Youth (OBOY) Luncheon, a celebration of achievement facilitated by Camp Fire of Northwest Ohio. They will also recognize seven area youth as “Absolutely Incredible Kids” this month, following in the footsteps of community leaders like Dr. and Mrs. DeBow Freed.

Dr. DeBow served as president of the University of Findlay from 2003 to 2010, and has served as president or as a dean at three other Ohio colleges and universities,  along with service in the US Army, being honored with the dedication of a room in his name at the Thayer Hotel at West Point.  The dedication ceremony, attended by officials from both Ohio Northern University and the University of Findlay, recognized that the institutions Freed has been associated with  had “prospered greatly under his leadership,” adding that his 32 years as a college or university president provided wonderful opportunities to positively influence the lives of thousands of young people.

Kitty Freed, equally dedicated, has taught in higher learning  institutions near her husband’s placements, fulfilling the needs  of each school and community. Dr. DeBow conveyed that his passion for public service came mostly from his mother, and in Kitty’s case, mostly from her father who served as an Army physician.

“We can think of no two people more deserving of recognition for service to youth than Dr. & Mrs. DeBow Freed,” said the Youngers. “They have worked tirelessly throughout their lives to help youth and young men and women develop the skills, acquire the knowledge, and hone the principles needed to be contributing and valued citizens. They are an example for all to emulate.”

The community is invited to attend the Camp Fire Northwest Ohio luncheon and honor the Freeds and these special young people this month. 

Tuesday, May 13. Winebrenner Theological Seminary, 950 N. Main Street, Findlay. Tickets, $35, may be purchased by contacting Camp Fire Northwest Ohio at (419) 422-5415 or by visiting campfirenwohio.com