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Charles Plumb – Vietnam POW

by Bernie Swain
The Vietnam War was a divisive war in many ways and characterized by large protests and violent riots. I remember walking out of my room as a student at George Washington University in Washington D.C. and seeing cars turned over and on fire and the National Guard standing 4 deep three blocks away ready sweep the campus and arrest anyone standing out in the open. It was not a war fought by the 1% as wars are today. The draft … Continue reading "Charles Plumb – Vietnam POW"

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Dot Richardson – Girls Can’t Play Ball

by Bernie Swain
I knew as a young child that God had given me the gift of athletic ability. Whether I was throwing a ball, racing around on my bike, or climbing a tree, I felt completely alive, filled with a spirit that was larger than myself. In school, girls weren’t allowed to try out for the teams, but I played pickup games of baseball, basketball, and kickball after school. Sports just came naturally to me, and I felt the Lord’s pleasure when … Continue reading "Dot Richardson – Girls Can’t Play Ball"

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Donna Shalala – Lessons from the Old Country

by Bernie Swain
I was a Kennedy Kid.  I was a nineteen-year-old sophomore at Western College for Women in Oxford, Ohio when John F. Kennedy was elected President in 1960. JFK was young and charismatic, energetic and idealistic. In his inauguration speech in January 1961, he famously said: “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.” I felt as if he was speaking directly to me, and I took his challenge to heart. Peace … Continue reading "Donna Shalala – Lessons from the Old Country"

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Sam Donaldson – Knowing Your Worth In Life

by Bernie Swain
I was born in El Paso, Texas, in 1934 and grew up on our family farm in New Mexico. My father, also Sam Donaldson, had bought the farm in 1910, two years before New Mexico became a state. My mother, Chloe Hampson Donaldson, was a schoolteacher. I went to the New Mexico Military Institute and then to Texas Western College in El Paso. I’ve always been fascinated by broadcasting. My mother bought a radio after the Japanese bombed Pearl Harbor … Continue reading "Sam Donaldson – Knowing Your Worth In Life"

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Wharton Business School Interviews Bernie Swain

by Bernie Swain
I had the fortune of being interviewed by Wharton Business Radio recently. Host Mike Useem and I discuss my journey building the Washington Speakers Bureau with no experience and turned it into the largest and most respected speaker's agency in the world. I also delve into my book What Made Me Who I Am and the first-hand accounts and defining moments in the lives of 34 of the speakers from Terry Bradshaw to Colin Powell. Click Here to Listen on Soundcloud.