Leadership in government and in business is a very hot topic these days. I have had the good fortune to meet and deal with leaders of all sorts and in all walks of life. Some have been good leaders, but others have been pretty bad. One of the really good ones is Dr. Jack Hawkins, who now serves as Chancellor of the Troy University System. I met Jack in 1971 when he was working at UAB. My wife Sara and I had been invited by the administration at UAB to visit and see firsthand what all was going on at the school. Jack, who was an Assistant Dean at the time, was our “tour guide” that day. He was most knowledgeable and quite impressive.
Jack says he learned valuable lessons from Dr. Joseph Volker, his “mentor” at UAB, and that he has utilized those lessons throughout his career. Jack says Dr. Volker told him “to hire the very best people you can, support and empower them; then turn them loose. You will have to fight the desire to micro-manage them, but they will do great things and create a fun environment – but of course, you hold them accountable.” What great advice and counsel!
Jack is a tremendous leader and is widely respected. In fact, Jack is the best “college boss” I have ever dealt with and there have been some very good ones. He is an effective leader and who understands what all it takes to be effective in a leadership role.
We are blessed to have a man with such tremendous ability and great character in charge of Troy University, a great educational institution in Alabama. In addition to being a great leader, Jack also is a man of integrity with very high moral standards. In my opinion, those traits are required if a person is going to be a truly effective leader. Jack had this to say recently in an interview:
I still believe there is room in this world for respect, civility, decorum, proper dress, and I want our students to have the benefit of good role models and function in an environment where those values are important.
There is an urgent need for persons in leadership positions to be real leaders and also to be role models for others. It’s quite obvious that Dr. Jack Hawkins understands what leadership is all about. We simply need more like him in today’s world.
My prayer today is for those who are in leadership roles in government, business, education, sports and in the home to be real leaders and role models for others. It’s critically important for men and women to include God as they go about learning how to be effective leaders. Leaders should also honor God in all that they do.
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