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Presidential Nominees

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Pundits have been calling the presidential field overcrowded, but with over 300 hundred million Americans, we thought there had to be other qualified candidates. A few weeks ago on the show, we asked listeners to imagine for a moment that to run for president you didn't need loads of money and a squeaky clean personal life. Who then, we wondered, would make a great president? This week we meet some of the nominees.

The Nomination Letters

My husband William Voelker should run for president. His platform would be very simple and straightforward.

  1. Change the National Anthem to "Margaritaville" by Jimmy Buffet, because he thinks it would be good for Americans to have to admit, even if it's only in song at sporting events, that something is "my own damn fault".
  2. He would champion election reform that would add a "No" vote to elections so that we would never again find ourselves voting for the lesser of two evils. VoelkerIf a majority of the country voted "no" on a campaign, the parties would have to supply us with an entirely new slate of candidates.
  3. He would order the release all secret documents thirty years or older especially controversial or much rumored matters such as those relating to Kennedy, Roswell, and Area 51.
  4. He would restore copyright to its original constitutionally mandated length.
Virginia Voelker - Danville, Virginia

Helene Leibowitz is the most amazing, awesome incredible person I have known. There isn't a person who meets her who isn't convinced that she is their best friend. She is attentive, attuned, caring, accepting, compassionate, kind, smart, organized creative, open, energetic, positive, and connecting. She has a no nonsense way about her that is also entirely charming, sweet, inclusive and non judgmental. She has the ability to bring diverse people and groups together. She is an inspiring leader, an organizer, a facilitator and a motivator for many. She seeks and fosters consensus, collaboration and connectivity. LeibowitzIn her personal life she is present and shows up for her children and grandchildren in a most loving and adoring ways. Her marriage to her husband of over 40 years is rock solid , loving and full of fun. Her sense of humor is spectacular and her appreciation for other's humor is generous and genuine. No matter where she goes or what she does she makes life long admiring friends. Even as she fights her most courageous battle with myaloma displesia, her spirit, though sometimes down and sad, is always authentic and honest. She makes even her dealing with her serious health condition an example to strive for. She shows us, her friends and family, integrity, grit and dignity. She would be a fabulous president because of her character, intelligence and experience in working with people and organizations.

Dita Teitelbaum - Miami, Florida

I nominate Annie Harvey, Warden of the NC Correctional Institution for Women (NCCIW) in Raleigh, NC

I have been part of the Kairos Ministry at NCCIW since 1994. Our program is a complex one involving a great deal of time and materials brought into the facility. Warden Harvey has made it possible for this to happen year after year even when it makes security more difficult.

HarveyBut even more important is the way she has taken care of the residents in her charge. They have multiple opportunities to train for life after release; she started a horticultural program that has made the grounds more beautiful; she fosters respect for the residents as well as for the administration and security. In short, she really cares about these women and it shows.

She is someone I would trust as president. I would be sure that Warden Harvey had the best interests of the people of the US in mind. It doesn't hurt that she has had to deal with the press and politics! As often as possible, she is part of the Sunday evening Kairos closing (twice yearly). She always speaks to the women involved with great caring and uses the time to remind them of their own responsibilities. Recently one of the residents died and, at the memorial service, Warden Harvey talked about her as one who not only knew the woman but loved her. She helped us all reminisce about the woman's time with us and the good things she did.

Gerri Batchelor - Cary, North Carolina

My wife Patricia Andre Thomas has a proven record of getting things done. Also, she has the ability to work with everyone in a respectful manner—likeable and unlikeable—and to give them bad news and still remain with an ability to communicate in an acceptable tone.

As a sales executive of a new home builder, she still receives cards and contacts from her buyers. HarveyAs the President and secretary of two condominium associations, she led agressive, improvement drives that left them both much better than when she started. Discord is always a part of the operation of any homeowner association, but she has always managed to keep parties focused on the betterment of the whole as opposed to getting lost in the minutiae of the more petty issues. Finally, the ability to delegate while always following up on the details insures that progress is always realized.

Alan Thomas - Baltimore, Maryland


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