David Berry ’92, M. Ed. ’96 and Theresa Smith ’93

By John Kissell

Theresa enjoyed David’s jokes and stories, his big personality, and his ease with an audience. She even told a friend, “If that David Berry asked me to marry him, I would do it.”

About David Berry ’92, M. Ed. ’96 and Theresa Smith ’93
David Berry is the founder of Rule13 Learning, a consulting firm specializing in leadership training and development. Theresa (Smith) Berry taught in the Escondido Union School District for about 10 years. They live in Vista, California, and have a son and two daughters.

OVERTURE

She knew right away. It took him some time to catch up.

Theresa Smith was intrigued during her freshman year by a certain tenor as they sang in the LMU choirs. She watched David Berry all that year, even became casual friends, but she thought he wouldn’t be back the next year.

She was wrong, much to her delight.

ADAGIO

David was a tenor. Theresa was an alto.

The tenors stood to the left, in the back. The altos stand to the right, also in the back. But all eyes in Murphy Recital Hall faced the director, renowned choral conductor Paul Salamunovich, and a mixture of admiration and intimidation kept them focused. That intensity, said David, led to an equal measure of relaxation and shaped the social relationships of the student singers. Theresa enjoyed David’s jokes and stories, his big personality, and his ease with an audience. She even told a friend, “If that David Berry asked me to marry him, I would do it.”

ALLEGRO

A dinner date was the start. He cooked for her at his apartment. She would leave endearing notes in his folder in the choir room. They both say now that their time together became more meaningful, at campus social occasions and during breaks on concert tours.

They grew closer and began to feel a harmony between them. She was an introvert; he was very much an extrovert. She was a steady force; he tended toward the energetic. Altos provide depth to the composition and move the progression forward; tenors carry the melody and supply character that draws in the audience.

FINALE

Theresa and David were married Sept. 9, 1995, and celebrated their 20th anniversary. this year.

She has retired from the choir, but he still sings with his church group.

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