Here are the books that inspired and entertained Arizona business leaders
For Kathleen Goeppinger, reading is a passion she developed at an early age, inspired by her mother, who was a librarian.
“I have often turned to the writings of Mother Teresa for inspiration and insight into the hearts and minds of my colleagues, knowing compassion and care is indeed a healing art,” says the president and CEO of Midwestern University.
But Goeppinger isn’t the only Arizona business leader who has been inspired by books. Here is what fills the bookshelves of Arizona’s most brilliant business minds.
Rita H. Cheng, president, Northern Arizona University: “‘The Leadership Challenge: How to Make Extraordinary Things Happen in Organizations,’ by James Kouzes and Barry Posner was an important book on my path to leadership.”
Michael Crow, president, Arizona State University: “Two standouts are ‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea,’ by Jules Verne, which ignited my imagination as a child, and ‘High Velocity Culture Change,’ by Price Pritchett, which I share often with colleagues.”
Peter S. Fine, president and CEO, Banner Health: “My favorite book was ‘Shogun’ because I love books that take me to another time and another place.”
Don Garner, CEO, Alliance Bank of Arizona: “‘Instant Replay: The Green Bay Diary of Jerry Kramer,’ about the 1968 Green Bay Packers, reinforced how hard work, discipline, respect and cohesive teamwork plays a vital role in winning.”
Debbie Johnson, executive director, Arizona Office of Tourism: “‘Rising Strong,’ by Brene Brown. It’s a great reminder that at some time in life we will all fail, get hurt or make mistakes, but it’s how we handle and accept those situations and then grow and rise from them that matters and makes us who we are.”
Ken Kendrick, managing general partner, Arizona Diamondbacks: “‘October Sky.’ It is a true story about a small town West Virginia guy that lived his dream to become a NASA scientist. It inspired me to believe that I could also achieve my dreams.”
Rachel Sacco, president and CEO, Experience Scottsdale: “‘The Glass Bead Game’ and ‘Siddhartha,’ both by Hermann Hesse, introduced me to new ways of thinking when I was in college.”
Steve Sanghi, CEO, Microchip Technology: “The best book I read was ‘Good to Great,’ by Jim Collins. I adopted the teachings in the book and they have impacted my career immensely.”
Lonnie J. Williams, Jr., managing partner – Phoenix office, Stinson: “‘Invisible Man,’ by Ralph Ellison. Written before I was born, but a milestone in American literature. I first read the book in high school and have read it many times since. I believe it should be standard reading for everyone, especially students of color.”