Woodruff Career and Technical Center
Degrees and Certifications:
Mr. Anderson is one of the newest additions to the Woodruff Career and Technical Center teaching staff. He has been an active part of the Peoria community for nearly 20 years and is involved in the city’s music, art, and woodworking trades. He began his career not as a teacher but rather as an apprenticing luthier in the guitar industry. In 2010, he attended the Galloup School of Luthiery in Big Rapids, Michigan. There, he was introduced to the world of woodworking and craftsmanship as an artform and a profession. Shortly after completing the program, he and his partner Lisa moved to Austin, Texas. He then worked for Collings Guitars, a high-end guitar manufacturer. He was there for a year before deciding to transition into guitar restoration and servicing with Austin Vintage Guitars. These two workplaces gave him an eye for detail and quality that would eventually lead him toward his career as a cabinet maker and millworker. In the summer of 2012, he and Lisa moved back to Peoria and were married. They later bought a house in West Peoria where they continue to lovingly work on it themselves with projects like planting flowers, trees, a big greenhouse, a paver patio and many others. They are always putting themselves into it and creating plans to improve upon their dream home.
After they were married, he began an apprenticeship with Geo. J. Rothan Company. For three years, he apprenticed under one of Peoria’s longest running businesses as a cabinet maker, millworker, and welder working on commercial cabinetry for area businesses as well as helping on historical restorations of Peoria Institutions. In 2015, he decided to become part of the team at Benchmark Cabinets and Millwork Company. It was here, that he gained the experience as a production cabinet maker and learned to train others in his department. In fact, one of his best trainees M. Peterson came directly from the Woodruff Career and Technical Center’s construction program back in 2017. He is still there today and has successfully taken over for Mr. Anderson in his absence.
In 2020, after being presented with an amazing opportunity and a wave of good luck, he began his first year as a teacher at Stark County High School in Toulon, IL. There, he taught several classes in woodworking and industrial design. Teaching high school students, the value of craftsmanship with a focus on building positive relationships became his primary focus and he is forever grateful for his time spent with that community. The lessons he learned during his two years at SCHS and the passion for teaching that sparked inside him, led him to the Woodruff Career Center. He could not pass up the opportunity to work for the students in his home community. He is now standing on the shoulders of the hardworking team at Woodruff that created the construction program and is working hard to develop it into something bigger and better than Peoria has ever seen, all for the primary focus of his work: our students.