Quotes from a Humble and Powerful Leader

On Wednesday, November 16, 2016, I had the privilege to share the guiding principles of the Oklahoma Ethics Business Consortium, better known as OK Ethics. Steve Ford, actor and son of former U.S. President Gerald R. Ford, shared his family history and the ethics he learned from his father during his speech, Humility Under Fire.  Prior to Steve’s introduction I shared that President Gerald R. Ford was an example of our principles including: service, collaboration, respect, dependability, honor, initiative and courage.  The following quotes of President Gerald Ford during his time in office were given to prove his character and ethics as one of the most powerful and humble leaders in the world.

Enjoy these quotes and some of my thoughts:

“I am a Ford, not a Lincoln”


“Truth is the glue that holds government together.”

I feel this holds true for our businesses today as well.

“I know I am getting better at golf because I am hitting fewer spectators.”


“Tell the truth, work hard, and come to dinner on time.”

A quote that President Ford’s parents drilled into his head growing up and he taught these to his children as well.

“I have had a lot of adversaries in my political life, but no enemies that I can remember.”  What a great way to look at his service to others.


“I had pro offers from the Detroit Lions and Green Bay Packers, who were pretty hard up for linemen in those days. If I had gone into professional football the name Jerry Ford might have been a household word today.”


“I do believe that the buck stops here, and that I cannot rely upon public opinion polls to tell me what is right.”

Public opinions are not always right, as his Presidency showed.

“I do believe that right makes might and that if I am wrong, 10 angels swearing I was right would make no difference.”

I loved this quote.

“I do believe, with all my heart and mind and spirit, that I, not as President but as a humble servant of God, will receive justice without mercy if I fail to show mercy.”


“I love sports. Whenever I can, I always watch the Detroit Tigers on the radio.”


“I am acutely aware that you have not elected me as your President by your ballots, so I ask you to confirm me with your prayers.”

This is a great message to us today. This role needs all the prayers you can send up.

“I don’t know what the future may hold for me — or for any of us. But I want you to know that I am a man who likes having critics who are not enemies.”

Loved this one too.

“I had a lot of experience with people smarter than I am.”


“A great nation cannot abandon its responsibilities. Responsibilities abandoned today will return as more acute crises tomorrow.”

So true.

“Even though this is late in an election year, there is no way we can go forward except together and no way anybody can win except by serving the people’s urgent needs? We cannot stand still or slip backwards. We must go forward now together.”

Unity is hard, but necessary to move forward.

“All my children have spoken for themselves since they first learned to speak, and not always with my advance approval, and I expect that to continue in the future.

I want to thank Steve Ford for sharing his family stories with the OK Ethics and our guests. We admire your father and mother Betty as examples of high ethical standard and their fit with the guiding principles of Oklahoma Ethics Consortium.

Travis Jones - CEO of Career Development Partners

Written By Travis Jones

Travis has been an entrepreneur and business owner in Tulsa for over 30 years. He is a well-known community servant and is dedicated to providing world-class service for everyone we encounter at Career Development Partners.

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