“Work hard at the job you’re at”

How he got into politics “Work hard at the job you’re at” Beginnings of CWRIC Finding supporters for the bill Getting Jim Wright to sponsor the bill Findings of the commission report Speaker pro tem on the day the bill went to the House Citizen participation The last hurdle – President Reagan Signing of the bill “No racial profiling” Bill 442

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I think as I look back over the forty years I'd been in public service, one of the things I always tried to do was not to get caught up in this whole thing about, "Where are you gonna be?" "Where are you going?" and looking out into the future as to where you want to go. Because I think a lot of people make a mistake about keeping their sight on where they want to go, and they'll stumble over something right in front of them. And so I've always maintained, work hard at the job you're in, do a good job there. Because then, if you come to a fork in the road, and it's like the great American philosopher Yogi Berra said, "When you come to the fork in the road, take it." But if people are so intent on their goal way over there, that's, that's driving them. It's not a personal decision, and I want to be in control of myself, not let other outside things direct me as to what I'm going to be doing. So I've always maintained: work hard at the job you're at. And so I always figured, just work hard at being mayor. Be a good mayor, and whatever happens in terms of opportunities that pop up or whatever you want to do, you can then do it. If you're mayor and a very difficult task comes up, if you've got creditability and a depth of, reserve of goodwill, then you can sacrifice some of that goodwill to take on this very difficult task. And so I've always felt, you just work hard at the job you're at, don't worry about having to keep your sight on where you're going to go in the future, 'cause that can really, you can stumble over something right in front of you.

Date: July 4, 2008
Location: Colorado, US
Interviewer: Tom Ikeda
Contributed by: Watase Media Arts Center, Japanese American National Museum

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