red rubber ball

Kevin Carroll – Priceless Discipline

by Bernie Swain
Kevin has been an inspiration to everyone from CEOs and employees of Fortune 500 companies to schoolchildren. His life and the lessons he learned teach us to embrace the spirit of play and creativity. The year was 1964. The place was my first-grade classroom in Philadelphia. I was sitting at my desk when the teacher was called out of the room. After a couple of minutes, she came back in and walked over to me, leaned down, and told me … Continue reading "Kevin Carroll – Priceless Discipline"

paralympic skier

Bonnie St.John – If I Can Do this, I Can Do Anything.

by Bernie Swain
The sports world is liberally represented on the lecture circuit. Competition in sports creates clear winners and losers. And the world loves winners. But sometimes, the competition in sports is intertwined with a greater competition in life. When that happens, you get lessons that are far deeper than those learned from winning or losing a game or contest. That is what we found in amputee, silver medal-winning Olympic skier, and Rhodes Scholar Bonnie St. John. Here’s what she’s lived and … Continue reading "Bonnie St.John – If I Can Do this, I Can Do Anything."

lessons from old country

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"

Senator Edward M. Kennedy

Melody Barnes – A Life That Was Well Lived

by Bernie Swain
As a lawyer and political advisor, Melody Barnes served as an aide and chief counsel to Senator Edward "Ted" Kennedy. She also worked on the 2008 Obama campaign and was appointed the Director of Domestic Policy Council. I grew up in Richmond, Virginia. My family was middle-class, and I had a happy childhood. But growing up African-American in the South I was always aware of those who came before me and paved the way. I think about my parents and … Continue reading "Melody Barnes – A Life That Was Well Lived"