EDITOR’S NOTE—This is the Preface written for 30 Days with King David by Andrew Card. It appears in the opening pages of the book. Because the bipartisan messages that introduce this book are so important and timely, we are publishing them online today as the book begins taking pre-launch sales on Amazon. (We also have the Foreword by Tim Kaine.)
By ANDREW H. CARD JR.
When Adam and Eve were given life by God—God also included the remarkable gift of free choice and with it came the responsibility of leadership.
Oh, how that reality has impacted all human life!
The Rev. Dr. Larry Buxton, with meticulous biblical research, takes this divinely designated leader from his teenage anointing, through his training and tests of leadership and then his 33 years of reign as king. As we read through these 30 days, we experience along with David all of the challenges, temptations, palace intrigue, egos, frustrations, failures and successes and even abandonment. The wisdom in these pages is more than a history lesson or a Bible Study. Truly, these 30 reflections on David’s life become for us a timeless guide to understanding the responsibilities and consequences of leadership.
No matter what your faith or tradition of worship—and, no matter your role in business, management, philanthropy, sports, politics, government or family—you will find the adventures in these 30 daily readings extremely relevant and highly motivating. We need to meet David again through Larry Buxton’s wise retelling of these stories—so that we all can lift up the best values in leadership in our institutions, our nation and our world.
Over the course of my life, I have been blessed to work for and with remarkable leaders. In business, as a structural design engineer; in government, at the local level and as a member of the Massachusetts House of Representatives; and in many roles for three U. S. presidents. I served twice a Member of the Cabinet, once as Secretary of Transportation and then as White House Chief of Staff under President George W. Bush. For several years, I was president of a trade association representing the captains of the American Automobile Manufacturers: GM, Ford and Chrysler.
Later, I was a vice president of General Motors. In education, I served as a dean at Texas A&M University and more recently as president of Franklin Pierce University. Additionally, I have served in many roles for not-for-profit institutions, and am currently chair of the National Endowment for Democracy.
So many experiences in so many different kinds of organizations taught me that effective leadership rests on a solid foundation of values. In these pages, Larry Buxton offers us an in-depth journey through the many turbulent twists and turns of David’s long career—as he had to struggle repeatedly to grasp that sure foundation. In my own journey through this book, I found myself recalling and reflecting on the wisdom of leaders who led me. I kept asking myself: How can I be a better leader going forward?
If you aspire to be a leader: Read this book. It is a road map that will help to form your conscience.
If you are a leader: read this book. It will have you reflecting on how you accepted and responded to that challenge—and will leave you better able to meet the challenges ahead.
If you are teaching leaders: Read this book. You will have new context to help form and launch the leaders of character we so urgently need to send into our world today.
Andrew Hill Card, Jr. has been a leader in the U.S. auto industry, a top figure in Washington D.C. and an educator. Among his many roles, he served as U.S. Secretary of Transportation under President George H.W. Bush and was Chief of Staff under President George W. Bush from 2001 to 2006. He also was president of Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire until his retirement in 2016.