New York - In Op-ed About Why He Is Not Running For President, Starbucks CEO Cites Interaction He Had In Israel With Revered Rabbi
New York - In a thought-provoking op-ed published in today’s New York Times (http://nyti.ms/1DxdYjM), Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz dispels rumors of a presidential candidacy and bemoans the current state of politics in America, noting that the country’s presidential contenders lack leadership and are “unable to rise above petty politics.”
Schultz goes on to say that presidential aspirants and other political leaders should seek to become so-called “servant leaders,” described as “men and women willing to kneel and embrace those who are not like them.”
“Everyone seeking the presidency professes great love for our nation,” Schultz writes. “But I ask myself, how can you be a genuine public servant if you belittle your fellow citizens and freeze out people who hold differing views? The values of servant leadership — putting others first and leading from the heart — need to emerge from every corner of American life, including the business community. . . . Too many of our political leaders are putting party before country, power before principle and cynicism before civility. Our country deserves a president humble enough to see leadership not as an entitlement but as a privilege.”
Schultz declares he will not be a 2016 presidential contender because he is “not done serving at Starbucks.” He proudly notes Starbucks’ policies of offering health care to part-time workers, stock options, and free college education. Still, he says, Starbucks can and will do more to “demonstrate responsible leadership.”
Interestingly, Schultz says he has drawn inspiration for his own leadership style from religious leaders including Pope Francis, who famously washed the feet of prisoners in Rome shortly after his ascension to Pope. He also fondly recalls an interaction he had with Rabbi Nosson Tzvi Finkel; an experience that has stayed with him even a decade later.
“The speculation about my candidacy reminds me of a lesson from a great Jewish leader,” recalls Schultz. “A decade ago, I visited the Western Wall in Jerusalem with Nosson Tzvi Finkel, a widely respected rabbi in Israel. As we approached one of the holiest sites in Judaism, the rabbi halted about 10 yards away as a crowd of admirers gathered nearby. I beckoned him further. “I’ve never been closer than this,” the rabbi told me. Astounded, I asked why. “You go,” he said. “I’m not worthy.”
More of today's headlines“Brooklyn, NY - Local watchdog groups are expressing skepticism over the DOE's plan to rely solely on data provided by 39 Brooklyn-area yeshivas currently under...” New York - DOE Probe Into Brooklyn Yeshivas Over Secular Schooling Draws Skepticism From Local Groups “Jerusalem - With his inflammatory statements in favor of burning churches, Rabbi Bentzi Gopstein spoke not only against democratic values but also against Jewish values...” Jerusalem - Burning Churches Kosher? 'Halachic Nonsense,' Says Torah Professor