Dan Glickman served as the 26th United States Secretary of Agriculture, a post he held from 1995 until 2001. Previously he was a Democratic representative for Kansas in Congress for 18 years. Currently he is the president of the Motion Picture Association of America, which is comprised of the "big six" Hollywood studios. Glickman was born in Kansas in 1944 and began his career as a lawyer. He was one of the managers appointed by the House of Representatives in 1986 to conduct the impeachment proceedings against Harry E. Claiborne, a Nevada judge. Glickman has more recently served as director of the Institute of Politics at Harvard University.
Question: What do you believe?
Dan Glickman: My personal philosophy pretty much emanated from my political work, which is treat everybody as if they’re important. Do not be arrogant, if I can avoid being that way, in terms of differentiating between people based upon their class and their status. I find that to be a useful tool. Not only is it the right thing to do. It’s also good business because you never know who’s going to end up being the head of a studio or the head of a company. In this particular business you’re up today and down tomorrow. So you never really know where people are in the scheme of things. But I’d say that my basic philosophy is be a friend to everybody and try to exhibit decent, interpersonal skills. And then the other thing I try to do is to use my imagination wherever I can. I’ve always found the difference between mediocrity and excellence to be imagination. There are a lot of smart people in this world, but some of them can’t do anything because they don’t envision what could be. They just take what it is.
Recorded on: 7/6/07