Over the span of a quarter of a century, I took an idea for a company and turned it into one of the most successful private businesses in North Carolina. We competed with larger, better funded companies. And we usually won! How did we do it? Our entire program was based on a foundation of core values: Integrity, Trust, Initiative, Leadership, and Professionalism. Every hire, decision, partnership, and relationship was evaluated through the lens of those well-defined values. Those core values were more than words on a poster for us, they formed the platform for all operations. We built an environment of trust and an expectation of the absolute highest standards of ethics, professionalism, and performance.
I believe that values-based, professional leadership is sorely needed in government today. Trust has broken down and we seemed mired in petty arguments and posturing rather than focusing on operating a government that is responsive, efficient, and effective. Our state deserves better. Good leaders set the tone, set the example, and provide a vision for unity that moves us forward.