The Durham Library Foundation presents

Leading Authentically in a Fractured World: A Public Conversation with David and Christopher Gergen

  • Tue, March 19 at 5:30pm

    Recognizing the growing political, socio-economic, and demographic divides in our country, how can leaders across generations drive positive, sustained impact? Join Durham native David Gergen, advisor to four presidents and bestselling author, in conversation with his son Christopher Gergen, a social entrepreneur and Durham resident, about what it means to lead authentically in a fractured world.

    Drawing on lessons they have learned through their respective leadership journeys, David and Christopher will explore questions such as: What does it mean to lead authentically? How do we lead with others vs. leading others? How do we build cross-sector/multi-generational coalitions? How can we increase our chances for fostering meaningful long-term impact in Durham and North Carolina? Where can we find promising leadership examples nationally and locally? What lessons can we draw from the past as we look to the future?

    About our speakers

    David Gergen recently retired as a professor of public service and founding director of the Center for Public Leadership at the Harvard Kennedy School. In addition, he has served as a senior political analyst for CNN and works actively with a rising generation of new leaders. He has served as a White House adviser to four U.S. presidents of both parties (Nixon, Ford, Reagan and Clinton) and wrote about those experiences in his New York Times best-sellers “Hearts Touched with Fire” (Simon & Schuster, 2022) and “Eyewitness to Power: The Essence of Leadership,” “Nixon to Clinton” (Simon & Schuster, 2001). A native of North Carolina, Professor Gergen is a member of the D.C. Bar, a veteran of the U.S. Navy, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations and a member of the U.S. executive committee for the Trilateral Commission. He has been awarded 27 honorary degrees. A Durham, NC, native, David now lives with his wife Anne in Cambridge, MA.

    Christopher Gergen is the founder of Forward Impact, which works with policymakers, philanthropists, investors, and innovators to deploy capital into high-impact scalable solutions that address systemic economic inequities. He is also Chief Growth Officer of 4P Foods and co-host of Moving the Needle, a podcast featuring guests who drive innovative solutions to address economic inequities and create generational wealth. He is the co-founder and past CEO of Forward Cities, a national nonprofit that has worked with over 30 cities to strengthen equitable entrepreneurial ecosystems; founding partner of Raleigh Founded, the largest entrepreneurial co-working community in North Carolina; and a Senior Advisor with the Algernon Sydney Sullivan Foundation. A former fellow and faculty member with Duke University’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship initiative, Christopher writes a column for the Raleigh News & Observer and is co-author of the nationally acclaimed book “Life Entrepreneurs: Ordinary People Creating Extraordinary Lives” (Jossey-Bass, 2008). He currently serves on the Governor’s NC Works Commission in North Carolina and lives with his wife and two children in Durham, NC.