YAA Assembly and Yale Alumni Fund Convocation: Five-word leadership stories

The theme of the 2019 Yale Alumni Association Assembly and Yale Alumni Fund Convocation was “Cultivating Leadership: Advancing Yale’s Mission.” To accompany, we asked the speakers and attendees to share their five-word leadership stories.

The response was overwhelming, with more than 200 stories rolling in. Here is a look at some of the highlights:

Speakers and Presenters

Listen; act with emotional intelligence
-Peter Salovey ’86 PhD, President, Yale University

Good communications begins with listening
-Nate Nickerson, Vice President, Communications, Yale

Work through fear, be brave
-Vicky Chun, Yale Athletics Director

Be like President Peter Salovey
-Marvin Chun, Dean, Yale College

Luck equals preparation plus opportunity
-Lisa Brummel ’81, Co-Owner, Seattle Storm, WNBA

Open-hearted, resolute; pursue meaningful impact
-Ginny Gilder, Co-Owner, Seattle Storm, WNBA

Ideas matter. People matter more.
-Tamar Gendler ’87, Dean, Faculty of Arts and Sciences

Collaborative visioning, transparency; energetic follow-through
-Indy Burke, Dean, Forestry and Environmental Studies

Informed, principled action with empathy
-Kerwin Charles, Dean, School of Management

Building relationships; ask, listen, act
-Weili Cheng ’77, Executive Director, Yale Alumni Association

Surpassing goals through extraordinary teamwork
-Joan O’Neil, Vice President, Alumni Affairs and Development

Do my best for others
-Michael Warren ’90, Member, Yale Board of Trustees

Learn from peers; have fun
-Kate Walsh ’77, ’79 MPH, Member, Yale Board of Trustees

Servant leadership and be genuine
-Josh Bekenstein ’80, Member, Yale Board of Trustees

Partnering with volunteers ensures success
-Jocelyn Kane, Managing Director, Yale Alumni Fund

Think big, then ask how
-Beverly Gage ’94, Professor of History & American Studies

Volunteer, Listen, Connect, Elevate, Repeat
-Nancy Stratford ’77, Chair, Yale Alumni Association Board of Governors

Thoughtful informed decisions create change
-Michael Tom ’83 MD, Chair, Yale Alumni Fund Board of Directors


Accountability and support with empathy
-Austin Baik ’11

Happy accidents build great lives
-Gary Barrett ’96 MF

Keep learning: practice makes progress
-Gautam Barua ’93

Listen. Really listen. Then act.
-Matthew Broder ’81,’87 MBA

Aim for excellence, accept failure
-Kathy Butler ’92

People united can move mountains
-Rocky Chin ’71 MArch

Be the leader tomorrow needs
-Jennifer Fernandez ’06

Exploration unlocks strength and wisdom
-Tyler Godoff ’16 MBA

Appreciate mentors, pay it forward
-Jeffery Harlowe ’77

Observe, learn, lead with compassion
-Vijeta Jangra ’13 MEM

Enough practicing; make it happen
-Seunghee Lee ’92 MusM

I seek and celebrate stories.
-Elissa Levy ’09

Connect, convene, collaborate for good.
-Rachel Littman ’91

The start: belief in yourself
-Dara Mandle ’97

I polish; let others shine
-M. Tracey Ober ’85

Changed course, but remained true
-Tanya Rivero ’95

Suffer, reflect, embrace, engage, lead
-David Sanchez ’84 MA

Remain principled but flexible
-Robert Schlaff ’99

Don’t be restricted by fear
-Denise St. Jean ’14

Work hard, expect surprises, relax
-The Truong ’93

Always say yes to breakfast
-Daphne Uviller ’93

Passion, perseverance, power, perspiration, patience
-Gary Whitman ’92

Alums help students, both thrive
-Peter Young ’74

Lead with heart, soul, mind
-Esther Zirbel ’93 PhD