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Summer 2002

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Leadership values

     Leadership, Values, and Institutional Success in the Twenty-first Century” was the timely topic of this year’s Harder Lecture, given by finance maven James A. Johnson. Before his talk, Johnson was awarded a Skidmore honorary degree for having “nimbly spanned such major crosscurrents of American life as business, arts, politics, and public policy” and being widely respected for his “business acumen, political savvy, diplomacy, concern for others, and fair play.”
     Currently vice chair of the Perseus banking and equity firm, Johnson previously spent a decade at the helm of Fannie Mae, the largest nonbank financial-services company in the world and this country’s largest source of mortgage financing. He founded Public Strategies, a consulting firm to advise corporations on strategic issues. From 1977 to 1981, he was executive assistant to Vice President Walter Mondale.
     Johnson is chair of the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts. He also chairs the board of the Brookings Institution and is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and the Trilateral Commission. A University of Minnesota alumnus with a master’s in public affairs from Princeton, Johnson is married to Harvard political scientist Maxine Isaacs ’69. —SR


© 2002 Skidmore College