JOB: Investment banker/former army captain
WHY YOU CARE: Because
the only thing better than one black president is two
funny. Almost everyone we know seems to know someone they thought was going to
be the first black president. The green-eyed congressman from Memphis, TN. The
well-connected mayor of Newark, NJ. The super-smart, liked-by-all black guy you
went to college with. The founder/publisher of this site. So it’s with healthy
appreciation for his stiff competition that we give you. . .Captain Westley
If “Wes,” as he’s known to friends, does not become the second
black president, it’ll only be because he chose not to. His story is no less
inspiring than his credentials are impeccable. In brief: gets kicked out of
school and shipped off to military academy at 12, turns the beat around in under
a decade, graduates Phi Beta Kappa from Hopkins, snags a Rhodes Scholarship to
Oxford, does a tour of duty in Afghanistan, investment banks before winning a
White House Fellowship.
Yeah. We said tour of duty.
Moore joined a a panel of veterans in testifying before the Senate Foreign
Relations Committee on the topic “Soldiers’ Stories From The Afghan War” (see
video below). We suspect accounts like his may have informed Gates’ decision to
remove General McKiernan yesterday — but that’s beside the point. As his Crains
40 Under 40 profile effuses: Moore served “10 months with the Army’s 82nd
Airborne Division in Afghanistan. There, he helped revise a program to win over
Taliban fighters, boosting its enrollment from 6 when he arrived to 500 by the
time he left, and earning a promotion to captain.”
Make that El Capitan.
An up-by-the-bootstraps background, a championship college football career, a
Rhodes Scholarship, a tour of duty, a People’s Hottest Bachelor nod, an Asia
Society fellowship, a White House fellowship — and, oh, did we mention the
Random House book deal? What else does a future president need? Oh, right. A
brilliant wife. Check. In summer 2007, Moore married the stunning Dawn Flythe, a
one-time senior adviser to Maryland’s lieutenant governor. From a distance, you
might mistake Mrs. Moore for a certain Mrs. Carter. From her resume, you might
mistake her for a certain Lady O.
couldn’t be kinder. The day Wes won his Rhodes Scholarship, he discovered that
there was another Wes Moore living in Baltimore. This second Wes Moore, also a
black man in his 20s, was headed to prison on a life sentence as Wes Moore #1
headed to Oxford. (Second-black-president) Moore arranged to see his
doppelganger in prison, and has kept in touch with him ever since. Next spring,
Random House will publish Moore’s Elevate: American Journeys into Manhood, a
parallel account of the “two Wes Moores.”
If the first black president
heeds the counsel of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, and creates a Council for
men and boys, he’ll undoubtedly turn to Moore, no stranger to the White House
(and an Alpha himself). In the meantime, the Moores are laying plans to use
Elevate to catalyze a movement — answering BHO’s call to community service with
a nationwide campaign. Their idea is to do for youth and service what, say,
Diddy did with youth and voting in 2004.
Of course, those who doubt
Moore’s pure intentions (read: those who envy his stunning accomplishments) say
all this good-doing is merely stage-setting for a political campaign. But you
know how that goes. The Stimulist is not in the business of tearing down young
people trying to build their communities up. And Moore just effuses too much
positivity to inspire anything but good will.
So, to review. Army chops,
political chops, financial chops, a memoir, a wife as brilliant as she is
beautiful. We give you. . .Moore for 2024.
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Wes Moore. The Next Barack Obama?