January also was about settling into our new locale. I obtained a Virginia driver’s license not long after we moved, but it was time to register the Toyota and get license plates from the Commonwealth. Maybe because mobility is such a value, the simple act of swapping “tags” (as we called them in Texas), not done for 25 years, seemed momentous.
Settling in also meant continuing to build a local network, and on Tuesday the 15th I took the Metro into town, walked across the Potomac on Key Bridge and onto the compact campus of Georgetown University. I had only lectured there once, in 2002 when an AA colleague was doing his MBA, but I kept a connection with my host back then, Prof. Lamar Reinsch. I remembered him as a quality guy, son of West Texas cotton farmers, German immigrants, and he responded quickly and positively to an e-mail sent a couple of months earlier. That Tuesday he set up a brief meeting with the associate dean for executive education and a colleague, and then we repaired to a fancy lunch at the Faculty Club (you could get used to a place like that!). We talked more about how I might be of service, and Lamar asked “What are you doing this Saturday?”
I don’t think there’s been a shorter interval between invitation and delivery, and on Saturday the 19th I motored down the scenic George Washington Memorial Parkway, crossed Key Bridge, and delivered a talk on leadership to 25 students in the school’s Executive Masters’ in Leadership program; it was a diverse and very engaged group. Oh, and another nice lunch beforehand.
It felt really good to be quickly involved with a local B-school, and I have long admired the Jesuit tradition at Georgetown. It seems to me that colleges with Protestant affiliations have mostly lost the link to faith and values, but it’s still strong at a place like Georgetown, evident in how they present themselves on their website, and in the classroom. Lamar, who I recalled was a Christian, and I yakked about it, and he confirmed that “Jesuitness” is woven throughout the institution.