Tech teacher is the marrying kind

Joseph Perret is a teacher at Pierce College in Woodland Hills, Calif. on Feb. 22, 2017. Perret became a minister to initialize his friend’s wedding. Photo: Marc Dionne

Joseph Perret has a habit of taking a leading role in any group he’s apart of. Whether it’s being a father to his three children, being a principle figure in his church, or instructing skiing programs on Mammoth Mountain. Now he’s taking a key position in a new endeavor, certifying his friends wedding.

In January 2017, Perret received a call from his best friend’s son Sean Cagle about officiating his wedding.

“We thought about it for months on end and we kept coming back to Joe even before we discussed it with him,” Cagle said. “We weren’t concerned that he’s never done it. We know that being a professor, speaking in front of a small crowd is something that he’s done as long as he’s been around. He’s an excellent communicator.”

Even though Cagle’s fiancé Ashley Rowlett had not come into contact with Perret as much as Cagle, her feelings toward Perret were similar.

“I have not known Joe my whole life like Sean has,” Rowlett said. “I’ve been around Joe three or four times now, and feeling his excitement toward us has made us really confident that we made the right decision.”

Perret quickly agreed to wed the couple and he went through the process of getting his certificate of ordination.

“I found out the laws in California were really rather strange,” Perret said. “To officiate a wedding ceremony, you have to be a deputized commissioner of civil services.”

Perret found an alternative way to get the proper qualifications.

“If you are an ordained minister, you can officiate at any wedding and sign any wedding certificate,” Perret said. “So I went online, and sure enough, I could get ordained into this ministry that does weddings.”

According to Cagle, they wanted someone special to them and thought it was a great opportunity to get a life-long friend involved in the ceremony.

“He was my dad’s best man,” Cagle said. “And we thought it would be special for us and my dad to have his best friend marry us.”

The couple were a bit hesitant about having a religious aspect to their ceremony, however they thought Perret’s approach was tasteful.

“We were okay with that as long is it wasn’t the overarching take-away from the ceremony,” Cagle said.

Perret wants to bring spirituality into weddings and make them memorable and fun.

“There is going to be videos of this that will far out last me, so I want to do a good job for sure,” Perret said.

When it comes to Perret, it seems he can’t get away from his daily job as a professor, even in other areas of life.

“I don’t view my role as a lecturer, I view my role as a coach,” Perret said.

Perret was raised to have a strong sense of community and to give back to his family.

“Some people give money, some people give their time. I give my time. I was a boy scout for years, and I got far more out of it then I put into it,” Perret said. “It’s fun to see kids I’ve mentored grow up and have families of their own.”