JUNE 2016 | PARAGONROAD.COM
THE FUTURE Are your kids doomed?
+ THE WORLD IS CHANGING: NEIGHBORS ARE TALKING LESS, COMMUNITY IS DISAPPEARING, RELIGIOUS ATTENDANCE IS PLUMMETING, FAMILIES ARE BEING REDEFINED. NOW, MORE THAN EVER, IS A TIME TO CREATE STABILITY FOR YOUR CHILDREN
HIS FAMILY LEGACY A Centi-Millionaire’s Focus + WHY LARRY MENDELSON, CHAIRMAN AND CEO OF HEICO (NYSE: HEI AND HEI.A), BELIEVES HIS GREATEST RESPONSIBILITY IS TO LEAVE HIS FAMILY WITH GOOD ROLE MODELS
Wisdom from a Sports Agent + HOW LEIGH STEINBERG, THE REAL LIFE JERRY MAGUIRE, MOLDS SPORTS STARS INTO LEGENDS
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A Centi-Millionaire’s Focus on Family How Larry Mendelson, Chairman and CEO of Heico (NYSE: HEI and HEI.A), puts his family first.
Decoding The True Self
Why former fashion maven, luxury resort owner and best-selling author, Sandra Biskind, believes living the right code leads to ultimate meaning and success.
Goodness is an Investment that Never Fails
Gary Hughes, President and Managing Broker of Aspen Sotheby’s International Realty, applied philosophical ideals and compassion to change the culture of a company.
A Legacy That Multiplies Over Generations As Chairman and CEO of Zions Bank, Harris H. Simmons embraces a philosophy of saving, and considers success something more than what you earn.
Are Your Kids Doomed?
The world is changing at a breakneck pace: people are getting married older (if at all), neighbors are talking less, community is disappearing, religious attendance is plummeting, families are being redefined. Now, more than ever, is a time to create stability for your children.
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Collection of Memories A heartwarming gift idea.
A Legacy Before Its Time
Why Victoria Woodhull, the first woman to run for president in 1872, remains the heroine the world almost forgot.
True Wealth: Transferring Your Values With Your Valuables
Q&A with Family Meeting and Dynamics Specialist, Emily Bouchard.
Ancient Wisdom: “Condemned To Be Free”
Super Agent’s Focus on Athletes’ Legacies Instrumental in His Own Turnaround
An existentialist’s search for purpose.
An interview with Leigh Steinberg, the sports super agent who has represented hundreds of top athletes over four decades, the real life Jerry Maguire upon whom the film was based.
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ISSUE 5 | June 2016
Paragon Road PUBLISHER Laura Roser EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Brian C. Hailes ART DIRECTOR Marko Nedeljkovic DESIGN Matthew Roser CONTENT EDITOR
Larry Mendelson, Heico (NYSE: HEI and HEI.A) Harris H. Simmons, Zions Bank Gary Hughes, Aspen Snowmass Sothebyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s International Realty Neal Katz, Award-winning Author of Outrageous: The Victoria Woodhull Saga, Volume One: Rise to Riches Emily Bouchard, Wealth Legacy Group Sandra Biskind, TheBiskinds.com Leigh Steinberg, Sports Super Agent
Mike Bishop Amanda Kelly Rachael Rifkin Laura Roser Matthew Roser
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A Centi-Millionaire’s FOCUS ON FAMILY How Larry Mendelson, Chairman and CEO of Heico (NYSE: HEI and HEI.A), Puts His Family First by Laura A. Roser
he Miami Herald estimated Laurans (“Larry”) Mendelson, 78, to be worth about $200 million. Larry says he doesn’t confirm, deny or comment on the exact amount he’s financially worth, but money means little to Mendelson without one major component: peace of mind. “Fame and fortune doesn’t appeal to me,” he said in his straightforward, humble way in a recent phone conversation I had with him. “People have big egos. They want to be recognized. You know, like Marilyn Monroe or a movie star. Look how important I am. Constantly in the news... And a bunch of them die either drinking, shooting themselves, or taking pills. That doesn’t bring happiness. What brings happiness, in my opinion, is peace of mind.” To Mr. Mendelson, the best thing in the world is feeling good about his decisions. He loves his wife, likes his life, enjoys what he’s doing and has a wonderful
family. “I’m not stealing from anyone. I’m not cheating anybody,” he said. “I’m a decent person. I work hard. I get the feeling of success because I put my heart and soul into it. I did my very, very best.” Sure, he’s earned a lot of money in his lifetime, which he certainly feels is a great blessing, but he’s always put peace of mind at the top of his list of values.
A Legacy Worth Emulating Larry believes the greatest responsibility is “to leave your family with good morals, good ideas, good role models, guide them when necessary, to be close to them and to love them.” There was a pause before Larry began speaking about his father. “My father was very intelligent,” Larry recounted. When Larry was younger, he went to his father and told him he wanted to be financially successful. “His advice was select something you like to do. Do it the best way you know how. Go all in. Do everything you can. Devote your time 24-7 and you will succeed. Don’t think of how much money you’re going to make and then go figure that. Just do what you love to do. When people do what they love to do, all of a sudden it works out.” The second thing his father emphasized is the mantra Larry has held close to his heart his whole life: peace of mind. It’s not only peace in knowing that you are honest and trustworthy, it’s also about focus. “If you’re constantly thinking, ‘I’ve got to make more money than he makes’ or ‘I’ve got to have a better position’ or ‘I’ve got to have the biggest house in the neighborhood because people won’t respect me’ or ‘I’ve got to have the biggest diamond ring’, you will never stop.” There is never an end.
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Laurans A. Mendelson is the Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive Officer of New York Stock Exchange-listed HEICO Corporation, cited as one of the 100 Best Small Companies by Forbes Magazine in 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014. Mr. Mendelson was also named one of the Top 100 Business Leaders by the South Florida Business Journal. He is a member of the Board of Governors of the Aerospace Industries Association in Washington, D.C.; immediate past Chairman of the Board of Trustees, a member of the Executive Committee and the Society of Mount Sinai Founders of Mt. Sinai Medical Center, Miami Beach; and Trustee Emeritus of Columbia University in The City of New York.
There is always a bigger home to buy and always But business isn’t all the family does together. someone who is wealthier or more well-known than “We love each other,” said Larry. “We take you. It’s a treadmill. vacations together. Every Sunday we have family dinner with all the grandkids and my sons and Larry’s family has always taken precedence in his their wives.” If a socialite is having an event during life. From the beginning, he dreamed of involving Sunday family time, Larry and his wife always his children in his business endeavors. When his decline. Sundays are sacred. “Some people go to sons were growing up, they contributed to the church on Sunday morning,” added Larry. “We go family real estate investment business. By the time to dinner on Sunday night and it draws the family his sons were in college, Larry switched the focus closer together.” from real estate to investing in public companies and his sons invested alongside him. Now Larry and As well as working hard and playing hard, the his sons run Heico, a multi-billion-dollar aerospace, Mendelson family is a philanthropic leader in the industrial, defense and electronics company that community, giving to universities, the arts and a they acquired in 1990 (back when it was only worth variety of other programs. n $25 million).
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Why Former Fashion Maven, Luxury Resort Owner and Best-selling Author, Sandra Biskind, Believes Living the Right Code Leads to Ultimate Meaning and Success
ll humans live by codes,” says Sandra Biskind. “You’re either living in the ego mind code, which is fear, distraction, separation and failure or you’re living in the divine mind code, which is unity and oneness.”
by Laura A. Roser
Alright, I have to add in a disclaimer here. I’ve been living in Southern California for the past year or so and, I have to admit, when I hear stuff like this, I always take it with a grain of salt. I live in an area where you can throw a rock and hit a yoga studio. There are many who claim to be spiritual gurus and, although I don’t discount spirituality, I certainly am cautious about whom I trust my mind to. There is, however, something that makes Sandra genuinely unique. This is the reason I was so excited about interviewing her. From the outside looking in, Sandra seems to have it all. She was a self-made millionaire by her late twenties, she married the man of her dreams and they opened an award-winning luxury resort in New Zealand where they ran retreats and classes for over a decade (sold off in 2012). She now lives in Manhattan Beach, California with Daniel, her husband and business partner, creating programs and writing books about the spiritual principles that have led her life. Sandra says her tremendous success was a direct result of her focus on spirituality. When she was 18, she almost died. This led to a profound experience that changed her thinking. “After that, I was never the same,” says Sandra. “It was my first complete and full enlightenment experience where I went into the oneness of whole life—the joy, the wonder, the bliss of it. My intuition was totally amped up. I was just a very different person after that experience.” Just two months later, her mother died because of a blood transfusion (she was given
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was this very savvy “ Ibusinesswoman with award-winning
businesses, but the other part of my life was definitely the most profound.
Sandra and Daniel Biskind are internationally known for their powerful transformational techniques that empower you to free yourself from limiting programs, beliefs and habitual thinking to enable you to realize your extraordinary potential and transform your life. Sandra authored and co-authored several books with Daniel including the three Amazon international #1 best-sellers in The CODEBREAKER PLATINUM Series which will empower you to change your thoughts and change your life. PEACE: Power Up Your Life, LOVE: Ignite The Secret To Your Success and AWARENESS: Discover How Life Really Works. For more information, visit www.thebiskinds.com
the wrong blood type) and Sandra took over her mother’s fashion businesses. Soon Sandra sold off the businesses and at twenty she was married and set up her first of seven fashion boutiques, which became wildly successful. This allowed her the freedom to pursue her loves: 1. charity events, 2. personal spiritual development. “Back then, I was spending time with all of the spiritual gurus, masters, teachers and success coaches on the planet.” At 27, she opened her first healing and meditation center and conducted mind, body, spirit festivals. She began writing for Australian and New Zealand mind, body, spirit magazines. “On the surface,” she says, “I was this very savvy businesswoman with award-winning businesses, but the other part of my life was definitely the most profound. It’s what created the woman who was successful in the world.” Sandra believes her innate drive to become the best version of herself has led her to the tools and resources to help others become the best versions of themselves as well. What it comes down to is rather simple, she says, the best version of yourself is the most loving, most forgiving and most expanded. But there is always opposition to reaching this best version of yourself. “The ego will always sabotage our ability to love and be one with even our families,” says Sandra. “You look at what is going on in the world. If families can’t get it together, how do we expect the world to get it together?”
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When I asked Sandra what advice she had for helping families “get it together,” she answered, “Forgive. Forgive. Forgive.” She also mentions taking total responsibility for everything that has happened in your life and observing what your family does that hurts you. Sandra shared an experience she had with a family member who was intentionally treating her very poorly. “But I knew,” says Sandra, “because of the program that she’s got running in her human computer that what she was doing was an absolute cry for love.” Sandra believes that when someone hurts you, it is because of two reasons: 1) It’s a cry for love or 2) they’ve pushed your buttons. When you’re in hurtful situations with others, she suggests asking the following questions: 1. Why am I feeling pain around this? 2. Why am I not neutral to it? 3. How do I come to a place of forgiveness? Sandra says, you’ve got a choice. “You can either forgive them and keep your love for them and your family in tact or you can have them take up rent-free storage in your mind and have this negative experience and go into stress, ill health, and separation.” It’s a constant battle of whether you want to be at the mercy of your ego and own pride or stay in your heart and know what they’ve done is a cry for love.
Training Your Ego Puppy Something Sandra talks about is imagining that when you were born, you were perfect, but you came with an ego puppy, which is all of the conditioning from your past, your parents’ beliefs, decisions you’ve made or results of decisions past generations have made that are now affecting you, and so on. It can run amok in your life, if you let it. Instead of killing your puppy (or ego), just recognize it for what it is. Many newage thinkers talk about getting rid of the ego completely, but for Sandra that doesn’t allow for whole living. “We want you to integrate that ego puppy,” she says, “and bring it into the family and train it. So that every time it piddles all over somebody by saying something nasty or horrible or in a bad tone of voice, you can say, ‘Oh, hang on a minute. That was my ego puppy. Sorry about that. Now let’s start again.’” This, she says, is how she and her husband have maintained such a wonderful relationship for so many years. “If Daniel says something to me, I’ll look at him and say, ‘I think your ego puppy just piddled all over me.’ And he’ll look at me and say, ‘Oh wow. I think it did. I’m so sorry.’ And we laugh. It’s over.”
Ongoing Improvement The most-exciting journey you can take, according to Biskind, is the journey from your head to your heart or from your ego mind into your divine mind and into your true self. But it takes time. “Daniel and I work on ourselves daily,” she says. “It’s not something that is instantaneous where you say, ‘Today I’m going to love my family, be successful, and write the best book.’ You don’t just decide this. It’s an ongoing process.” n
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Goodness is an Investment
THAT NEVER FAILS
by Amanda Kelly
ary Hughes, President and Managing Broker of Aspen Sotheby’s International Realty, used philosophical ideals and compassion to change the culture of a company. And he talks about philosophy so eloquently that one might unwittingly mistake him for a university professor or spiritual guru. Maybe deep down he is, but on the surface, Hughes is a successful real estate industry veteran with more than 30 years experience representing master-planned projects and luxury home sales. In 1984, Hughes moved to the United States from South Africa and began a career in real estate that same year. Three years ago, he came onboard at Sotheby’s with a plan to change the company’s instinctively competitive culture. Aspen is a highly competitive marketplace with more than 800 brokers in the city alone. “When I got here there was a kill or be killed attitude,” Hughes said. “What I wanted to do was shape a philosophy of how we should work as a group. It took time but we’ve had an incredible three years.” The thought influences at the forefront of Hughes’s company culture ranges from timeworn thinkers like the Buddha and Aristotle to modern-day savants like Tom Morris. “A great read for anyone running a company is Morris’ book, If Aristotle Ran General Motors,” he says. “I’d highly recommend they read and instill it in their daily life.” Beyond the walls of his offices, Hughes describes an ordinary, yet nonetheless, fulfilling family life. Balancing his work life with hobbies such as hiking and golf in addition to the occasional family vacation is important to him. Hughes and his wife have two teenage boys and two older daughters—one who is still in college and another who has since graduated and started a career in real estate. Throughout their children’s lives, Hughes and his wife have made a concentrated effort to expose them to countless volunteering opportunities in order to give back to the community and instill lasting values. The family volunteers once a month, cooking Saturday dinners at a local church.
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Gary Hughes is President and Managing Broker of Aspen Snowmass Sotheby’s International Realty—a full-service real estate firm providing integrated services to clients in the Aspen, Snowmass and Roaring Fork Valley. Hughes is the recipient of the 2005 American Resort Development Association Project of the Year Award and the Ritz-Carlton Residence Club, where he was awarded Top Sales Producer nationally. He lives in Aspen, Colorado with his wife and two teenage sons.
“Volunteering is a huge part of why my children appreciate what they have,” he says. “They are able to see that there are other people that need help and that the more they can give the more fulfilled they will be in life. You really want to have children that understand and are smart enough to know that life doesn’t hand you anything.” Professional Legacy Relies on One’s Relationships Over time, Hughes says he has learned to appreciate how much he can still learn from other people. “Once you’re out of college, whether you’re working for a company or not, you’ve got so much more time to invest in yourself. To invest in learning and philosophy and understanding how the world really works. I’ve learned so much from other people and I never stop learning. That part is just incredible.” He often goes “into the trenches” to get to know his employees—taking them to lunch and opening himself up to conversations to determine not only what motivates them, but also what makes them happy or unhappy. “Leadership has to be grounded in a love for what you do and an appreciation for all your coworkers. It has a trickle down effect,” he says. “The whole concept is based on the ideal that everybody matters. Goodness is so critical in everything that we do that it is an investment that never fails. To sustain corporate excellence you must sustain these values.” n
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A Legacy That Multiplies OVER GENERATIONS As Chairman and CEO of Zions Bank, Harris H. Simmons embraces a philosophy of saving, and considers success something more than what you earn.
By Amanda Kelly
n my personal life,” Simmons says, “the most important legacy I’ll leave is the character of my kids. There is a lot of leverage in that. If your objective is to do something useful in the world, kids with strong values is a legacy that multiplies over generations.” A young Simmons started his banking career at 16 years old when he came to work for his father. “The profession found its way into the DNA of my family and spans over four generations,” he says. It was a tumultuous time for the financial industry when Simmons’s father began his career—the 1929 stock market had crashed and the worst economic crisis of modern times would beset the market through the Depression. In spite of this, Zions First National Bank prospered and in the 1960s, the older Simmons led a group of investors to acquire majority control from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Subsequently in 1965, the bank’s parent organization, Zions Bancorporation, became a publicly traded company. “My father used to talk about his work and I had always liked the idea of a profession where I could make a difference and help people.”
Zions has roughly 200,000 business customers, and a majority are small- to medium-sized businesses. Simmons prides himself on Zions’s commitment to small business loans. “We do more proportionally than virtually any other large bank in the US and we focus on helping entrepreneurs and family-owned businesses succeed. That’s highly satisfying for me as I consider what I’m doing with my life.” A heavy-lettered quote by Zions founder Brigham Young decorates the wall at the main branch in Salt Lake City. It reads: “If you wish to get rich save what you get. A fool can earn money, but it takes a wise man to save and dispose of it to his own advantage.” Simmons has framed his legacy in this tradition, cultivating in his children a strong appreciation for savings. “There is so much wisdom to that quote,” he says. “Over the years, I’ve witnessed people who are pretty good at earning money but who are not good at building a solid financial foundation.” “In all of my experience,” he continues, “what I’ve seen is that financial success isn’t derived from how much money one makes; it is derived from how disciplined one is at savingand making whatever one has work for them. I feel strongly about this and have tried to teach my kids the same.”
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Harris H. Simmons is the Chairman and CEO of Zions Bank. He has served on numerous boards in the Salt Lake City area and he is the past chairman of the American Bankers Association. Simmons, a lifelong Utah resident, lives in Salt Lake City with his wife and four teenage children.
His interests go far beyond bank savings and sums — Simmons has an affinity for classical music, a gift passed down from his parents. He also collects art – primarily western landscapes, including those of renowned Utah artist LeConte Stewart. “I frequently saw him in Kaysville where I grew up, painting old barns and landscapes. A variety of his works now adorn the walls of my home. Great art, music and literature are a really important dimension of life.” Simmons doesn’t have a firm retirement date in mind.
Simmons and his wife have four teenage children. He isn’t certain whether his kids will find their way into the family business or not, but he adds that it is not something that concerns him much either. “I care more about what kind of people they are,” he explains. “They’ve grown up in a reasonably privileged home and this is not something that I ever want them to take for granted. My wife and I emphasize the importance of doing well in school, honesty, working hard and other values like these.”
“The whole idea of retirement is a bit strange to me. It’s something that we don’t do a very good job of preparing peoplefor—of how to continue contributing postretirement.When I do retire from my day job, I expect I will find myself working in some fashion until I can’t get out of bed anymore.” He draws from his childhood experiences in Boy Scouts when determining his overall personal and professional success—”It may sound trite, but in my observation there are people who end up as net-takers in life and the principle I’ve strived for is to live my life as a netcontributor, to leave the campground in better shape than I found it.” n
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Collection of MEMORIES by Rachael Rifkin
ne of my all-time favorite gift ideas comes courtesy of Holly Burns’ blog, Nothing But Bonfires. For her dad’s 60th birthday, Holly collected friends and family members’ favorite memories of him, presenting them to him as a bundle of 60 letters. Here’s the email she aznd her family sent out to everyone, asking for their help: Hello everyone! If you’re receiving this email, you probably know that our dad, Patrick Burns, is turning 60 next month (much as he would hate us to be reminding everyone, I’m sure.) To celebrate his birthday, we’d like to put together a little surprise to let him know that his nearest and dearest are thinking of him. We’re going to try and create “60 Years of Memories” by filling 60 envelopes with a memory his friends and family have of him. And this is where you come in! If you have a spare moment in the next few days, we would be so grateful if you’d jot down a favorite memory you have of our dad and put it in the post. It doesn’t have to be anything fancy – you can just write it down on a piece of paper and sign your name. You can mention anything you like – although the more nostalgic the better! Please absolutely feel free to send more than one memory (in fact, we welcome it – we’ve got 60 envelopes to fill!), but make sure you write them on different pieces of paper (and sign your name to each) so we can split them up. Thank you so, so, so much for participating
– we know everyone is busy with their own lives, and we do appreciate you taking a few minutes to do this; it will be so worth it when he reads all the memories people have of him! (Please don’t forget to keep it a surprise until then, though!) Thank you so much again. --Holly, Tom, Luke, and Susie As you can imagine, Holly’s dad loved it. He spent a long time reading each letter, reliving each memory. It was a wonderful way to reflect on a big milestone. This is a great idea for a lot of reasons. It’s beyond thoughtful, nostalgic, fun, and gives you a multifaceted look at someone’s life. Best of all, it’s one of the few life story projects that can be given as a surprise since it doesn’t require the giftee’s participation. This kind of project also works well for a holiday like Father’s Day. Each child could write their father a letter with some of their favorite memories of their dad. Young kids could write (or get help writing) some of the reasons they love their dad. I’m planning on doing a modified version to learn more about my mom, who passed away in 2013. I’m going to start by reaching out to some of the close childhood friends she kept in contact with for years. I’ve already composed a letter explaining the project, I just have to send them out. I can’t wait to hear their memories of her. No matter what the occasion, memories are the perfect gift. n
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Rachael Rifkin is a ghostwriter/ personal historian who blogs about the traits we inherit, whether genetically or environmentally, and the qualities that we find only in ourselves. Her favorite things are reading, random acts of kindness, high fives, playing with her dogs, and laughing with her husband. www.lifestoriestoday.com/blog
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A Legacy Before Its Time Why Victoria Woodhull, The First Woman to Run for President in 1872, Remains the Heroine the World Almost Forgot By Laura A. Roser
hen men attempt bold gestures, generally it’s considered romantic. When women do it, it’s often considered desperate or psycho.” – Sarah Jessica Parker
The quote above may be the modern Sex-in-the-City reaction to a bold woman, but in the early Victorian era a bold woman was cast as something more sinister, threatening the very fabric of society, rather than desperate or psycho. She was shamed into acquiescence then obsolescence. Neal Katz is the award-winning author of Outrageous: The Victoria Woodhull Saga, Volume One: Rise to Riches. He is an active feminist and gives half of the earnings from his books to help foster equal treatment of women. He says, “Ultimately Feminism leads to better treatment of all humans.”
legacy. Not until just recently. Only now is Victoria finally starting to get the credit and proper place in history she deserves. She was demonized in the American press, presented as harpy or evil satanic figure for challenging the male establishment – especially conservative religious elements. When she left the United States, broken and disappointed having lost a tremendous fortune, she reclaimed comfort and prosperity in England as a proper lady – and continued fomenting radical women empowerment. To protect her standing as Lady Martin, Victoria suppressed through a cadre of lawyers any news articles, word, or mention of her name. So, Victoria herself prevented contemporaneous recognition throughout her later life.” Neal smiled. “And little sister Tennessee lived like a Queen as the Countess of Montserrat (the title bequeathed by Queen Victoria) outside of Lisbon, Portugal. See why I’ll need four volumes?”
Ms. Victoria Woodhull, the subject of his four-volume historical fiction series, is someone I had never heard of before I ran into Neal at a writer’s party in California last summer. I remember flipping through a copy of Neal’s book and asking him, “So, who is this Victoria Woodhull?”
The first biography about Victoria, The Terrible Siren, by Emanie Sachs, was written in 1928 following Victoria’s death. Neal laughed after he said the name. “I guess 1928 was still too early to accept a powerful Woman’s voice.” Neal looked at me intently. “I think that anyone who studies her will learn that she was an incredible forerunner for Feminism, social responsibility, and ultimately Humanism.”
“Oh, someone you will be surprised you didn’t know.” Mr. Katz’s blue eyes sparkled with passion. “She’s the first woman to run for president in the United States,” he said. “First woman to address Congress. She and her sister became he first women to open a brokerage firm on Wall Street and the first women to own and publish a newspaper…” He paused for dramatic effect. “All in the 1870’s!”
Neal first became interested in Victoria because his own struggles, he felt, mirrored many of hers. When I asked him what makes for a great legacy, Neal did not hesitate. “1. Passion for your cause or focus; 2. continuous dedication to excellence; and 3.allowing love to guide you.”
Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this woman was her undauntable drive to boldly state her opinions in a time when radical ideas (especially from a woman) inspired great fear and social alienation. In 1870, the Sister’s newspaper, Woodhull and Claflin’s Weekly, advocated women’s suffrage, equal pay for equal work, birth control, legalization of prostitution, and free love. The last an argument for full legal rights for women, not a salacious cause of promiscuity. Their publication also printed the first United States translation of Karl Marx’s The Communist Manifesto. I recently had a chance to sit down with Neal at his office and ask him some more detailed questions about this fascinating woman. “Tell me about Victoria’s legacy,” I said as I pushed the record button on my iphone. Neal nodded his head. “Astonishingly, there really was no
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“Love is the strongest fuel we as human beings can obtain and utilize,” Neal confidently stated. From the development of multi-million-dollar businesses to the creation of his own wine label to becoming an award-winning author, Neal has learned to act out of a desire to show love and accomplish the very best expression of himself. He believes his dedication to excellence— even with small things, like weeding his garden—has made all the difference. Besides writing the three other books in the Victoria Woodhull saga, and possibly the screenplays to a television series based on the novels, Neal is also passionate about big ideas to improve the lives of many. He has launched a nonprofit, Conscientious Credit Funding Organization (ccfoglobal.org) to fund the creation of millions of new jobs through an innovative application of a sustainable an renewable funding model to renew or build infrastructure, deploy green energy, produce jobs and promote sustainable technology. n
Neal Katz is the author of Outrageous: The Victoria Woodhull Saga, Volume One: Rise to Riches. He is a semi-retired, serial entrepreneur with a passion for women rights. He practices Yoga, meditates daily, has taught A Course in Miracles, produced Oregon wines under the LOVE, a Wine Co. label, enjoys reciting Vedic sutras, and writes his own inspirational poetry. His second book in the Victoria Woodhull saga, SCANDALOUS: Fame, Infamy, and Paradise Lost which covers the Presidential election of 1872 is set to be released summer of 2016. To learn more about Victoria and her sister, Tennessee, and about Neal, visit www.thevictoriawoodhullsaga.com. 2016 Winner of four National Awards and one International Award. : IBPA Ben Franklin, Bill Fisher Award for Best First Book by a Publisher, and the IPPY Award for Best Historical Fiction. Also named a Finalist in the Historical Fiction category of the 2016 Next Generation Indie Book Awards, and second place winner of the IndieReader Discovery Award for best Fiction. Recently named Best New Fiction by the International Book Awards.
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Are Your Kids Doomed? By Laura A. Roser
t’s normal for older generations to talk about how great things were back when they were kids. People were honest. Families had values. Kids were respectful. And so on. But, it is my belief that now happens to be a more extreme time of chaos simply because we are shedding so many old traditions in favor of new, experimental models. I’ve spoken with quite a few childless singles and couples and there is a rising concern about having the ability to raise children correctly. One man told me he was terrified to have children because he didn’t think he could give his kids the kind of upbringing his parents gave him. “When I grew up,” he said, “we lived in a close neighborhood. All the kids played together. I was surrounded by my cousins and extended family. I just don’t see many options to replicate that experience.” The concept of family or community is changing from what it used to be. According to the U.S. census, in 1960, 72% of people ages 18 or older were married. Today 50.2% are. Studies show that less people are attending church or identifying themselves with a specific religion. Neighborhoods aren’t what they used to be either. Recent
data from the General Social Survey found that only 20% of Americans spent time with their neighbors in the last thirty days. Four decades ago, a third of the population hung out with their neighbors twice a week. They say it takes a village to raise a child, but where do you find your village? Certainly, your neighbors are too busy. And if you don’t go to church, where does your village of people with common values, traditions and beliefs exist? It’s not all bad. There are reasons people are moving away from tradition. Over time as society changes, it makes sense to explore new models. But, you don’t want your family to fall victim to wishy-washy thinking. You need solid guidelines and principles to help mold your family. If your kids don’t get direction from you, they’ll get it by accident—from friends, school, the Internet or whomever crosses their path. It’s not enough to tell your kids to follow the golden rule or be a good person. What about when your children have an ethical dilemma? How do they solve it? How are they going to handle sex? What is the value of work? What about spiritual development? How will they handle failure? How are they going to treat others? How are they going to deal with dishonesty or manipulation? Are they going to be giving? How will they be motivated to follow their passions? How will they know when to follow the rules and when to break them? Someone needs to teach them this stuff. When children are growing, they need a tribe to create a sense of belonging and a structured belief system with traditions and rituals that help them grow into competent adults. If this is not provided, it chips away at their sense of security and they search for their own place of belonging with, sometimes, disastrous
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The news of the day, including destructive and violent acts by young people who don’t know how to behave in a civilized society. Society has provided them no rituals by which they become members of the tribe, of the community. All children need to be twice born, to learn to function rationally in the present world, leaving childhood behind. I think of that passage in the first book of Corinthians: “When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child; but when I became a man, I put away childish things.”
results – especially if their easiest option for a “tribe” is a gang or another harmful group. Or they simply get caught up in a sense of feeling lost, unable to move forward and become the capable adults they were meant to be.
Putting Aside Childish Things In The Power of Myth, Bill Moyer’s asks Joseph Campbell about mythology in modern society. The following is the interchange between the two. Moyer’s words are italicized to differentiate between the two speakers: “What happens when a society no longer embraces a powerful mythology?” “What we’ve got on our hands. If you want to find out what it means to have a society without any rituals, read The New York Times.” And you’d find?
That’s exactly it. That’s the significance of the puberty rites. In primal societies, there are teeth knocked out, there are scarifications, there are circumcisions, there are all kinds of things done. So you don’t have your little baby body anymore, you’re something else entirely. When I was a kid, we wore short trousers, you know, knee pants. And then there was a great moment when you put on long pants. Boys now don’t get that. I see even five-year olds walking around with long trousers. When are they going to know that they’re now men and must put aside childish things? What are some of the coming of age rituals common in our society? There’s graduation—from elementary school, middle school, high school, and college. There’s learning to drive at 16. Religions have traditions, such as a Bar or Bat Mitzvah in Judaism. But, more and more, traditions of lifecycle development are disappearing. People are getting married later, if at all. In 2004, Kathleen Shaputis wrote a book about the “boomerang generation,” where kids go off to college, graduate and move back in with their parents—a trend that has steadily increased in the U.S. since 1981.
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There is a pervading mentality that the purpose of parenthood is to protect children from the harsh realities of becoming an adult. But, the problem with this kind of thinking is that no one knows when kids have transitioned into adulthood. It’s now common in our culture for people reach their 20s (or even 30s) without ever learning to cook, manage their finances, or live on their own. This is how a book like Adulting: How to Become a Grown-up in 468 Easy(ish) Steps has become a New York Times Bestseller. It covers everything from buying toilet paper in bulk to how to avoid hooking up with people at the office to how to find a good car mechanic.
In order to grow into happy, healthy adults children need to be taught how to:
I recently heard about a college orientation meeting in which all the parents were gathered together in a room. The speaker told the parents that their kids were adults now—in college! It was the parents’ responsibility to stay out of the business of their children and let them go through school without parental meddling.
One of the best ways to encourage the development of your children is to create your own set of rituals and traditions.
1. Demonstrate an ability to earn their own money. 2. Motivate themselves to achieve personal goals. 3. Create a solid sense of self not wrapped up in issues related to wealth. 4. Overcome setbacks and learn from failure. You will undoubtedly have your own set of criteria. Whether you’re wealthy or not, doesn’t matter. Your kids need a path to becoming independent, self-sustaining adults.
When your son or daughter graduates from high school, for example, what are traditions that can help with a
Launching Your Kids Right Coventry Edwards-Pit wrote a book called Raised Healthy, Wealthy & Wise, in which she and her team interviewed a series of children of exceptionally wealthy families. In their interviews, they determined that there were four main components that successfully launched children into adult life.
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transition to adulthood? Certainly, many high school graduates go off to college. But what other family rituals can you put into place to signify the transition? Maybe a graduation trip. A special celebration dinner. A letter from the parents with advice for the early years of adulthood. These are the exciting things your kids will look forward to. But, there should also be the not-so-exciting things about growing up, such as they now have to pay for their own housing, buy their own clothes and so on. The more specific you can be with your rituals, the better. Perhaps you have special china that you only use for family wedding festivities, your formal Christmas dinner and for
graduations and other important celebrations. Maybe with each childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s graduation, you tell the story of how their great-great-grandmother struggled to earn her degree (the first person in your family to earn one) and put food on the table during the Great Depression and now they are carrying on the family legacy by following in her footsteps. Maybe you have a special song or poem you create for each child to commemorate the new transition. Or a piece of jewelry they can use as a reminder of the event and to pass on to their children one day. Research your heritage. Where Laura A. Roser is the did your ancestors originally come from? What kinds of traditions founder and CEO of did they have? One of my friends Paragon Road, the #1 created a website for the Jewish authority in meaning community which tells of the legacy planning. For tradition of giving children a Hebrew more information about name (in addition to their given name) as a way to encourage the meaning legacy planning childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s growth and development. services, visit What sorts of traditions can you www.paragonroad.com. create or become a part of? Another family I know will not allow their sons to get their driverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s license until their have earned their Eagle Scout. Start with the kinds of values you want your children to cultivate as adults and create traditions around that. There are common age milestones marking new levels of maturity. Twelve. Sixteen. Eighteen. Twenty-one. Twentysix (when some psychologists say the brain has become fully developed). Envision the ideal path. Should your children do their own laundry at age 9 and learn to cook by 12? Should they have their first job or entrepreneurial endeavor by 15? Should they spend their 20s traveling and exploring potential passions? What about college? What about marriage and children? When is the right time? They will begin to develop their own viewpoints on all of this and your role as a parent is not to force them, but to give them space to become themselves. Still, a structure for moving from one life phase to another will give them a sense of time and place that has all but been lost in our culture of adulthood reality avoidance. There is a time to be young and irresponsible. There is a time to leave the nest. There is a time to put aside childish things and your kids will be far better off if you help them step into the joy and pain of becoming a full-fledged adult. n
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ENDURING There are families of enduring greatness. They have achieved excellence in times past, yet continue to pursue what made them great. They have stories to tell. They embody high character, are celebrated throughout history and loved by all who know them.
Whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s your legacy?
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TRUE WEALTH: Transferring Your Values
WITH YOUR VALUABLES
Q&A with Family Meeting and Dynamics Specialist, Emily Bouchard
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LR: What got you started working with wealthy families? EB: Honestly, a prayer. It was a month after 9/11 and I was plaintively asking from my heart what could I possibly do to bring more peace into this world? In that moment I had a thought to create “cells of peace” across the country. Having no idea what that would look like, I started where I could – with families. At that time, I worked at an adoption agency finding permanent homes for children in the foster care system. I also facilitated a couples’ group and a group for stepmothers. I began writing about the day-to-day issues stepfamilies face and launched a blended family coaching practice in 2003. A year later I was referred to a company specializing in preparing heirs for wealth transitions in their families. I honestly didn’t even know this kind of work existed. I studied the unique challenges faced by affluent families, and was shocked to learn from the research of Roy Williams and Vic Preisser that wealth transfers fail 70% of the time, with the money gone and with familial relationships in shambles. I started working with my first family in 2004, and have found this work to be the most challenging and fulfilling career I could ever hope for – my prayer was truly answered! By bringing peace and harmony into the complex families I am honored to work with, I not only make a difference in their lives, but I also see the ripple effect in the lives of their employees, their communities, and their grantees.
LR: Will you explain the concept of “True Wealth”? EB: At Wealth Legacy Group, we draw from the wisdom of our mentor, James (Jay) E. Hughes, and his premise that a family flourishes when you nurture their intellectual, human, social, spiritual and financial capital.
LR: Why do you think people need to consider their other “assets” beyond the financial ones when transferring wealth? EB: We believe that when you use your financial capital in service of your other resources, you then have a truly rich life, where you thrive, while supporting others to thrive as well. The majority of financial wealth is often transferred in conjunection with a significant loss. If you only focus on the intellectual and financial sides of the equation, and ignore the human, social and spiritual sides, you are likely to experience a great deal of strife and conflict within a family system. Considering all the facets of true wealth creates a life raft for the surviving family members to be secure and safe as they navigate that particular bend in their river.
LR: How do you extract values in a way that is most meaningful? What is the process? EB: As you know from Dr. Bruce Feiler’s research that you featured in last month’s issue, the most powerful
way to tap into a family’s values is through the use of storytelling. By the time a family heirloom or family property has transferred to a third generation, the stories that went along with that purchase are long gone. And often the burdens and challenges associated with those belongings overshadow any meaning that may still be attached to them. We employ a variety of techniques to engage family members in researching, sharing, and capturing family stories and the values they teach. In some instances we facilitate family members in sharing their favorite memories associated with whatever is most meaningful to them, such as: family holidays, family trips, a first major purchase, etc. We also invite them to look at the money messages and values that have been passed along generationally that have had an impact on them, both positively and negatively. We ask them to think about the first time they remember an experience related to money and to think about what messages they heard and what decisions ensued. We first have them write these out for themselves, as this can be quite personal. After building an experience together of safety and trust, we facilitate a conversation with their family members about these memories in a way that opens up greater understanding and connection. Along with families, we also facilitate this process for confidential groups of women inheritors and women philanthropists, so that they can learn from each other’s stories. A wonderful outcome of this experience is that they often build a trusted community where they can begin to explore their personal values as well as their familial values.
LR: Do you have any examples or case studies of people your approach has worked well for? EB: Oh, there are so many. One that comes to mind was of a family with an entrepreneurial widower with a daughter from a first marriage, four children from a second marriage, and a new wife and new step-daughter who was the age of a number of his grandchildren. We were asked to work with them to repair a major breakdown in trust amongst some of the siblings, and between the second generation and their new stepmother. We chose to have an empty chair in each of our meetings to represent the mother who had passed away 6 months earlier after an extended fight with cancer. We wanted to presence her as much as possible, and we asked everyone there to share stories about her in relationship to the family’s “true wealth” – college trips and educational goals she had for her children and grandchildren, family and social gatherings that she hosted and what were her favorite parts of those events, her belief in God and how each family member experienced her spiritual side in meaningful ways, her
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approaches to skinned knees, bruised egos, and other human experiences, and her favorite idioms, phrases, and family stories about money. The stepmother was present for these conversations and got to hear, along with everyone else, what family values were deeply ingrained and present in the family she was now a part of. We then shifted to her and asked that she share memories and stories from her life related to the five facets of true wealth and the family got to know her and what shaped her approach to life, love, and money. From this place, we were able to explore past promises and expectations and how the estate plan and transition plan honored the original values of the deceased mother and living father. And then we opened up new possibilities for what this next stage in their fatherâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s life could look like with his new wife, so that his children did not need to feel threatened, and he didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t need to feel defended or offended by their concerns.
all of his memories in that way, but more importantly, to create a trip of a lifetime that is by far their most cherished memory of all â&#x20AC;&#x201C; having that quality time with him and everyone being together as they captured his values and his legacy for future generations he will never meet.
LR: What are the most common mistakes people make when transferring wealth? EB: With regards to this particular topic, the most unfortunate mistakes occur when someone reads an article like this one and thinks that they can implement
As this process unfolded, the older grandchildren who were present became curious about how their grandfather had made his money and how he came to own so many different businesses in three states. The more they learned, the more interested they became, and they requested the opportunity to go on a family road-trip to see the properties and film him telling his stories on site. He loved the idea and the family worked together to plan out the trip and to determine the best methods of filming and archiving his memories at each stop. A few years later he was tragically killed in a plane crash and his family was so grateful that they chose to invest the time and energy and resources to not only capture
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these ideas on their own, without professional facilitation. This can often backfire and have disastrous results. I’ll give you an example. A father read a recommendation in a book that he should ask his children what they wanted of his at the time of his passing. He thought this was a great idea and the next time his daughter was visiting he put it into action. He asked her to tell him, of all the things he and her mother had, what did she really like and want. She was very hesitant to say anything as she didn’t want to appear greedy, and, because she was afraid of possible repercussions. He encouraged her and let her know that he really wanted to know. She chose in that moment to trust him and said that she always loved a hand carved nativity scene her parents had brought back from South America when she was a little girl. Her father immediately reacted, yelling: “That’s impossible! You can’t want that! You aren’t religious! You never go to church!” and then told her to pick something else. You can imagine how that went. She simply said he was right and that she didn’t want anything and that she was just kidding. This happens all the time with the most well-intentioned parents. They can see how important it is to be inclusive and to ask for the thoughts and stories and opinions of their loved ones, but they can often be less skillful in how to cultivate authentic sharing. Most families operate largely from what Patrick Lencioni, the author of The Five Dysfunctions of a Team, calls “artificial harmony”. Over time we are trained to know where the electric fences are and, as a result, we do not feel safe opening up beyond those boundaries. Families benefit greatly from having a skilled facilitator to guide them through the process and to help them build skills to communicate openly and entrust each other with what matters most – their human capital.
Emily Bouchard has worked with wealthy families and couples since 2004 and has facilitated over 130 family meetings. Trained as a social worker, she is passionate about doing what she can to strengthen family relationships and decrease unnecessary suffering and heartache. A leading expert in the field, Emily has been featured on numerous TV and Radio shows including The Today Show and NPR, and has been quoted in print around the world, in publications such as Wall Street Journal and The New York Times. To learn more, visit www.wealthlegacygroup.net For your readers who feel inspired to apply some of these ideas on their own, I caution them to start very slowly and to follow a few simple guidelines: 1. Start by sharing a positive memory first. 2. Ask others to share a positive memory in the same vein. 3. Stay curious and interested. 4. Stay out of certainty, agreeing or disagreeing. 5. Listen. Listen. Listen…and avoid interruptions. 6. When they pause, simply ask them to tell you more. 7. Thank them for being willing to share with you. 8. If someone declines, don’t press them. As a professional who facilitates conversations like these, I still find it risky and challenging to apply these principles in my own family. Luckily they are used to me continually trying, and this past year we had a breakthrough success. After our Thanksgiving meal, there was a lull in the conversation. I took a risk and shared how when I’d recently been on a date, the gentleman asked me to share a story about something that I was most proud of in my life. I told my family how I was taken aback at first, and then shared the story of how my experience as an eighteen year old counselor at a summer camp for children with cancer had inspired me to major in child development. Looking back, I was proud of myself for creating my own major and excelling at it. I then asked my family if they’d be interested in sharing their memories of proud moments. To my delight, and to my father’s great satisfaction (and pride) everyone did, including my two sisters-in-law from England and Germany. We left that experience with everyone feeling closer and knowing something about each other that we wouldn’t have known otherwise. n
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Ancient Wisdom: “Condemned To Be Free”
An Existentialist’s Search for Purpose by Laura A. Roser
ean-Paul Sartre was a French Philosopher born in 1905. Although a recognized intellectual, he is perhaps best known for his fictional works and plays, which are richly symbolic and espouse his strong views against the existence of a god and a person’s responsibility to define herself. The Roman Catholic Church was not impressed with his atheist views and placed his work on their list of prohibited books (Index Librorum Prohibitorum) in 1948. Sartre won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1964, but refused it, remarking, “a writer should not allow himself to be turned into an institution.” He believed all people are free to create themselves and not defined by laws or morals from a divine being. It is in facing this realization that a man or woman can begin the journey of defining what morality means to him or her. In his work Existentialism is a Humanism, Sartre lays out his philosophy of self-definition: “What do we mean by saying that existence precedes essence? We mean that man first of all exists, encounters himself, surges up in the world – and defines himself afterwards. If man as the existentialist sees him is not definable, it is because to begin with he is nothing. He will not be anything until later, and then he will be what he makes of himself. Thus, there is no human nature, because there is no God to have a conception of it. Man simply is. Not that he is simply what he conceives himself to be, but he is what he wills, and as he conceives himself after already existing – as he wills to be after that leap towards existence. Man is nothing else but that which he makes of himself. That is the
first principle of existentialism. And this is what people call its “subjectivity,” using the word as a reproach against us. But what do we mean to say by this, but that man is of a greater dignity than a stone or a table? For we mean to say that man primarily exists – that man is, before all else, something which propels itself towards a future and is aware that it is doing so. Man is, indeed, a project which possesses a subjective life, instead of being a kind of moss, or a fungus or a cauliflower. Before that projection of the self nothing exists; not even in the heaven of intelligence: man will only attain existence when he is what he purposes to be. Not, however, what he may wish to be. For what we usually understand by wishing or willing is a conscious decision taken – much more often than not – after we have made ourselves what we are. I may wish to join a party, to write a book or to marry – but in such a case what is usually called my will is probably a manifestation of a prior and more spontaneous decision. If, however, it is true that existence is prior to essence, man is responsible for what he is. Thus, the first effect of existentialism is that it puts every man in possession of himself as he is, and places the entire responsibility for his existence squarely upon his own shoulders.” The thing I like best about Sartre are his views taken from his 1948 essay “Qu’est-ce que la littérature?” (What is Literature?) in which Sartre writes that literature is not a self-indulgent act by the writer, but a moral activity to enhance the freedom of humanity. It, as with the creation of any art, is necessary in a free society. The freedom to express oneself creatively is in direct relation to the freedom to define oneself within a culture. n
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Super Agent’s Focus on Athletes’ Legacies Instrumental
in His Own Turnaround By Mike Bishop, JD
eigh Steinberg is the sports super agent who has represented hundreds of top athletes over four decades, the real life Jerry Maguire upon whom the film was based. Leigh has been quite open about his personal challenges with alcohol. He has detailed how he and his partner made tens of millions of dollars in selling their agency while continuing to work with top talent. Nevertheless, after a series of personal misfortunes involving his father, children, wife and even his home, Leigh’s life spiraled downwards ending up in financial ruin driven by his alcoholism and ultimately leading him into bankruptcy. He began showing up in the press again a couple of years ago after completing sobriety treatment. The setting of many of these interviews was much more modest this time - a small condo in Orange County where he lived, a stark contrast from his Glory Days as the world’s first and leading super sports agent. Although Leigh lost himself to drinking for some time, his previous clients and friends never gave up on him. This, he contributes to his lifelong belief in the importance of investing in relationships and dedicating efforts to things that have lasting value. “My father raised me with two core values,” Steinberg says, “one was to treasure relationships - especially family - and the second was to try to make a meaningful difference in the world and help people who couldn’t help themselves.” From Leigh’s childhood, his father taught him the importance of how fortunate he was to be living in the U.S. in good health and circumstances.
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Leigh William Steinberg has spent his 41year career as an American sports agent representing over 300 professional athletes ranging from football to baseball to boxing to basketball. Steinberg is credited as the real life inspiration of the sports agent from Cameron Crowe’s 1996 film Jerry Maguire.
Leigh carried this philosophy with him in his professional life. All athletes that he represents must commit themselves to giving back to the community in some way, such as proactively working against an injustice the client had felt growing up. “You have a chance to leave legacy,” Steinberg insists. “You have a chance to address central issues that have always bothered you, and to actually make a real difference.” This emphasis on athletes giving back to their community is just the right thing to do according to Leigh. “It’s less about branding and more about empowerment of the young man to see that he’s got the ability to move beyond self-absorption to make a real impact.” But it also helps them to position themselves for a career beyond sports. Everyone has heard of the star athlete who soon after retirement loses it all and returns to their old neighborhood with few life skills. In contrast, Leigh’s approach helps clients be aware of the future value that their brand, their contacts and their current income can provide them in the future. In addition to the stereotypical second career as
Leigh wrote a best-selling book, Winning with Integrity, providing insight on how to improve life through non-confrontational negotiation. Furthermore, Leigh’s most recent book, The Agent: My 40-Year Career of Making Deals and Changing the Game, details his decades of dominance in the sports industry and sheds light on overcoming his personal struggles to launch his comeback. Leigh has been rated the #6 Most Powerful Person in the NFL according to “Football Digest” and the #16 Most Powerful Person in Sports according to “Sporting News.” He resides in Newport Beach and has three children.
‘sportscaster’, Leigh cites Brett Jones, a former football player client who now heads up multi-billion dollars asset management firm in the San Francisco Bay area (named Northgate). Leigh most recently made news when he represented this year’s top draft quarterback, Paxton Lynch, his highest profile client since his return. Although now 67 years old, Leigh is very much in a ramp up phase. He and his clients have several projects in place, from community outreach efforts to advocating sustainable environmental causes to a venture capital fund. The goal is that it must offer a lasting, positive impact on society.n
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ISSUE 5 | JUNE 2016
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