Books That Inspire 2006

Personal History
Katharine Graham

My perpetual fascination with women who have grown into leadership roles by choice or by circumstances led me to numerous books highlighting women of different generations and periods of time, each with their own unique battle. Katharine Graham’s autobiography depicts her role as a woman far ahead of her time because of sheer circumstance and clearly not by choice. Her ability, although very reluctant, to embrace her role as the CEO of one of the largest newspapers in the world, The Washington Post, is almost un-canny. She is forced by unfortunate tragedy to step into an unfathomable role, completely uncharted by women. Not only is she faced with carrying on a family publication of gigantic proportions, she is also challenged to move beyond her own realm and into a realm many others believed was impossible. Her courage and fortitude to successfully conquer a pressman’s union strike, empower a staff to seek the truth in breaking a landmark story that would topple a presidency, prosper during the women’s movement, and raise four children – all done while carrying herself with undeniable poise and elegance – are astonishing. Through-out her story, she speaks with candor about her life’s lessons, her friends and foes, as well as her emergence into a world power. As one of the most impressive women of whom I have read, Katharine Graham’s story, told through her own eyes, is truly an inspiration for any woman of any generation--especially this one.
Stephanie Rempe
Associate Athletic Director