The editor, like the graduating seniors featured in this issue offers, a self-portrait.


For this year’s portrait of outstanding members of the class of 2014, the graduating seniors get to have their say. We also asked them to send in their selfies (that’s mine accompanying this column, incidentally) to give them an additional chance at visual self-expression.

Contributor Marcus Thompson delved into their psyches and asked them not how technology has changed their lives or where they see themselves in 10 years or even how they’ve tackled seemingly insurmountable obstacles in their young lives. Instead he got more personal and philosophical, checking in on their cultural references, motivations, and self-assessment ability, among other areas.

I decided to put myself through the same exercise, and so here’s my self-portrait of the moment, beginning with my quote, which is actually a Nike trademark: Just do it.

If I could have lunch with anyone, I’d invite Winston Churchill to Chop Bar for a beer and discuss how he got so smart, so pithy, so memorable, as quoted by two of our students. (“If you are going through hell, keep going.” And: “To improve is to change. To be perfect is to change often.”)

A book/movie/song that blew my mind recently is The Orphan Master’s Son, which made me recoil in horror and sent me down an educational path to investigate North Korea and the obscene regime that the whole world tolerates.

The last time I cried was on March 7, my mother’s 89th birthday, when my brave, smart, big sister broke down on the telephone over deciding, all alone in Arkansas, to go ahead and approve pacemaker surgery for our mother. It was the right call: Mom survived.

On the question of success, I’d say I work hard, take risks, and pick myself up and keep on keeping on when the failures happen. My real idea of fun, at least when I am able-bodied, is a long run, but hanging out with my horse may trump that at the moment. I’d say being a business owner is one hell of a tough assignment, rewarding as it is. I look forward to traveling and being reminded even more about what a small world we live in. And I dream about changing the world through truth, honesty, and good journalism.

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