Institute for Charitable Giving

There Is a Great Concern for People—Compassion, Deep Affection

The feeling is so strong, it is nothing less than ministerial in its approach and commitment.

I spent hours with Bart Giamatti. He was President of Yale University. It was a fascinating session.

“The truth is,” he tells me, “I hate being President of Yale. If I had to be President anywhere, it would be Yale. That’s not the problem. I simply don’t like the job.”

“What I want most in life is to be Baseball Commissioner. That is my goal in life.” (And indeed, he did become Baseball Commissioner.)

“I don’t understand, Bart. You’ve been President of Yale for four or five years. And you tell me you hate the job. Why do you stay?”

“I’ll tell you why I stay. It’s because I love people. I really believe this is where I belong. I know that through my efforts, I am touching the lives of thousands. They in turn touch the lives of thousands. What else could I possibly be doing that would be more important? For me, it’s all about people. It’s a love affair.”

I am convinced that those who may not have this same feeling, this love affair, may actually be in the wrong profession. You need to feel that you are really making a difference.

There should be an irrational exuberance. A joy inexpressible.


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